June 2016

Engineer found with 27,000 child sexual abuse images


A Cirencester engineer caught with more than 27,000 child sexual abuse pictures and videos was told by a judge today that some people would be made physically sick just by hearing a description of the images.

Antony Stefaniuk, 52, of Chestnut Lodge, Perrotts Brook, Cirencester, admitted nine offences of possessing or making indecent images of children and was sentenced to 2 years jail suspended for two years at Gloucester crown court.

He was also fined £2,000 and ordered to pay £500 costs. Stefaniuk, a marine cable engineer, was placed on the sex offender register for ten years and ordered to undergo two years supervision.

Judge Jamie Tabor QC told him “By downloading these simply appalling images you are encouraging those who take and make them to carry on. Your role may be unintentional but without you and people like you these images would not exists.”

Prosecutor Robert Morgan-Jones told the court police went to Stafeniuk’s home on 6th Oct last year with a warrant after being alerted that he was using a peer to peer file sharing system on which 49 suspect files had been identified.

On his computer and DVD storage system police found 1,119 of the worst category A still images and 7 category A videos. There were 954 Category B stills and 8 videos. The biggest number of images, 25,039, were at the least serious categorization, C. There were also 23 Category C videos.

In total, said Mr Morgan-Jones, Stefaniuk was in possession of 27,150 illegal images and films

Sabhia Pathan, defending, said the probation pre-sentence report on Stefaniuk had ‘identified very particular issues’ in his life and background which helped explain his offending.

She referred the court to references provided for Stefaniuk and an ‘eloquent’ letter he had written himself.

Judge Tabor commented “He says in his letter ‘I would never cause any harm or suffering’ and I accept that is true but of course he is harming people by viewing this material and he has got to understand that.”

The judge added “If I was to read out the descriptions of some of the images he had some people would be physically sick.”

Ms Pathan said “He is crying out for help. That can only be done by probation intervention. He is a very well educated man with a degree in electronic engineering.”

Passing sentence, Judge Tabor told Stefaniuk he would have to give up his present job because it involves working abroad and he would have to be available locally at all times to undergo the supervision part of his sentence.