August 2006

Former council chairman jailed for child porn

THE former chairman of Long Sutton Parish Council has been jailed for three months after admitting downloading and distributing child pornography.

Christopher Duckworth, 64, of Bingham Court, Long Sutton, admitted five charges of distributing indecent images of children between August 8 2004 and February 28 2005, when he appeared at Lincoln Crown Court.

He also admitted making an indecent image of a child and possessing indecent images of children.

Duckworth, who has resigned as council chairman, was also placed on the Sex Offenders’ Register for seven years and his two laptop computers were confiscated.

He became a parish councillor in 2003 and had been chairman for four months before his arrest.

In sentencing, Judge John Milmo rejected a plea from the defence that Duckworth’s sentence should be suspended. He said Duckworth must have known that children had been corrupted for his perverse pleasure.

David Matthew, prosecuting, said Duckworth had accessed adult porn chat rooms hiding his identity by claiming to be a 22-year-old bisexual woman. He then went on to exchange e-mails containing child porn images.

He was arrested after an indecent e-mail he sent was found on the computers of men being investigated by police in Cumbria and West Yorkshire. Police searched Duckworth’s home and found his two laptops contained 156 indecent images of children.

Jonathan Bertram, defending, said Duckworth was at home recovering from a hernia operation when he started accessing adult pornography on the internet.

He said Duckworth had destroyed his reputation , but had served his country in an exemplary fashion while in the Army and was a hard-working family man.