September 2016

Pervert who downloaded over 3,000 ‘horrific’ images of young children avoids jail

A pervert who downloaded over 3,200 ‘horrific’ indecent images of children has avoided jail.

Lee Groves sought out images of tots as young as 18 months old being sexual abused.

When police raided the 45 year old’s home on Albert Street in Whitworth in February this year, they found a USB stick and laptop containing 3,295 images including 287 of category A – the most serious, Burnley Crown Court heard.

Officers also recovered a stained school dress large enough to fit a ‘six or seven-year-old girl’, various pairs of knickers and nappies and child-size sex toys.

An examination of his laptop also found that Groves had shared images with other perverts through online conversations over a four-month period.

Groves, who has served more than seven months on remand in custody, pleaded guilty to making, possessing and distributing indecent photographs of children and given a two-year community order with a 50-day rehabilitation activity requirement.

He was also ordered to sign the sex offenders register and handed a sexual harm prevention order, both for five years.

Jacob Dyer, prosecuting, told the court how 226 of the category A images were videos and other images were made up of 239 category B and 2,769 category C.

The court heard how Groves took part in the online chats between December 212 and April 2013 and spoke to at least five different people.

Mr Dyer said the conversations included Groves and another person talking about ‘how they would like to have fun with 11 year old girls’ and also discussed picking up 10-year-old boys and girls and ‘bringing them back for fun’.

The court heard how Groves also shared his ‘favourite pic ever’ with one person from Keighley.

Sentencing, Recorder Sara Dodd said: “These are real children. Somebody’s child, grandchild, niece or nephew. They are being abused for your sexual gratification and people like you create a market for such horrific abuse.”