September 2016

Thousands of sexual images of children found on IT worker’s computer

A SELF-CONFESSED sex addict who downloaded thousands of child porn images and movies has been spared an immediate jail sentence.

IT worker Antony Slatcher was caught with the images, which included pictures of babies and more than 2,000 of the most serious Category A pictures, at his home in Winterfield Drive, Bolton, by police investigators on July 24 last year.

He pleaded guilty to three counts of making indecent photographs of children and a fourth charge of possessing extreme pornographic images of animals between May 7 2010 and July 24 2014.

At Bolton Crown Court Rachel Cooper, defending, said Slatcher, who lived alone, regarded himself as a sex addict who had become addicted to porn.

“When he was arrested his immediate feeling was one of relief,” she said.

“It is something he wanted to stop but did not know how to stop.”

But she stressed that, although he viewed the porn, Slatcher had no intention of abusing children himself.

Stella Massey, prosecuting, told the court that Slatcher’s laptops, hard drives and memory sticks were analysed and, in total, 31,383 illegal images of children were found as well as 1,314 movies and 1,849 extreme pornographic images involving animals.

Slatcher, aged 49, has no previous convictions and Miss Cooper said that since his arrest he has suffered from depression, has taken voluntary redundancy from his job and is now unemployed.

She added that Slatcher is keen to get help for his addictions.

“This is the time for him to grasp the nettle and address all these problems he has,” she added.

Recorder Paul Reid QC said he accepted that Slatcher had no desire to become sexually involved with children and, if he imposed a short custodial sentence, it would not result in him getting the help he needs.

“The long term benefit to the public, in my judgement, is more likely to be achieved if you are given the assistance you need,” Recorder Reid told Slatcher.

Slatcher was sentenced to 16 months in prison, suspended for two years with two years’ supervision.

A sexual harm prevention order restricting his computer use was also made for five years, he was banned from working with children and vulnerable adults and was placed on the sex offenders’ register for 10 years.