August 2016

Dorset man jailed for life over Philippines child sex abuse


A pub landlord from Dorset who travelled to south-east Asia and filmed himself sexually abusing children as young as eight has been jailed for life with a minimum term of 14 years.

David Shepherd, 60, from Bridport, flew to the Philippines and recorded himself committing serious sexual offences, including rape, against children. He also paid for and directed live “shows” over the internet in which children as young as 17 months were sexually abused.

He was found with a large collection of films he had produced and tens of thousands of indecent images and videos of children that he had downloaded to his computer and hard drives.

Such was the extent of his offending that the case was split into a series of hearings at Dorchester crown court. He was convicted by a jury of 22 counts of sexual offences against children including rape, attempted rape, producing indecent movies of children and paying for sexual services of a child.

He admitted 10 counts of arranging and facilitating a child sex offence and possessing 20,207 indecent images and videos.

He will have to serve at least 14 years behind bars before being considered for parole.

The judge, Peter Johnson, told Shepherd on Wednesday: “You have no moral boundaries. You have shown no remorse. Your acts will haunt your victims for the rest of their days. Their innocence has been taken from them.

“You have a deeply engraved sexual interest in young children. You are unquestionably a danger. This life sentence reflects the public abhorrence for your shocking crimes.”

Shepherd was arrested in November 2015 at the Loders Arms pub near Bridport where he had been landlord for six months.

Police found that his offending went back to 2007. They discovered that he had abused four girls under 13 in person while in the Philippines. Back in the UK he had contacted other paedophiles in the Philippines and directed at least 76 live “sex shows” involving Filipino children.

During police interviews Shepherd denied visiting and meeting the children in the Philippines, despite evidence including videos of him abusing children, travel tickets and financial records indicating otherwise.