October 2016

Pervert escapes jail after being caught with indecent images of children, bestiality and sexual torture


A HALESOWEN pervert who owned and ran a Scalextric circuit and children’s party company and was caught with a “disturbing” collection of indecent images of children has escaped jail.

Jonathan Sword, aged 54, also had images of sexual torture and sex with animals. He was caught after the police were called to the funeral parlour where he worked.

His bosses had been suspicious about his behaviour in the mortuary – although he faced no charges in relation to that when he appeared at Warwick Crown Court.

Sword, who owned and ran the Phoenix Scalextric Circuit in Jill Lane, pleaded guilty to six charges of making indecent images of children and two of possessing extreme pornography.

He was sentenced to 16 months in prison suspended for two years and was ordered to take part in a rehabilitation activity for 50 days and to carry out 100 hours of unpaid work.

In addition Sword, of Southwick Road, will be barred from working with children and was ordered to register as a sex offender for 10 years.

Prosecutor Martin Butterworth said Sword came to the attention of the police in May while he was working for a funeral parlour, which he did not name, in south Warwickshire.

The proprietor of the funeral parlour had ‘discovered him alone in the mortuary in suspicious circumstances.’

When the police spoke to Sword about the suspicions over his behaviour at the funeral parlour, they seized his computer, together with the phone he had had on him in the mortuary.

After he had given a mostly ‘no comment’ interview, a member of the police high-tech crime unit examined Sword’s phone, on which nothing incriminating was found, and his computer.

That had a large number of indecent images of children on it, including 47 movies and 51 stills classed the most serious category A, there were nine category B movies and 29 stills, and six movies and 55 stills at category C.

But Mr Butterworth pointed out there were many other images which the expert had not classified.

When Sword, who had no previous convictions, was interviewed again he admitted downloading the images and building up his collection of them over the past five years.

Mark Sharman, defending, pointed out that although Sword had made no comment in his first interview, that had been in relation to the matter about which his employer had called the police, rather than the images later found on his computer.

Mr Sharman said Sword, who may suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder, had served in the Royal Armoured Corps for 16 years, after which he set up a business manufacturing toy soldiers before going on to set up the business running Scalextric events.

He added that Sword was ‘highly motivated to address his offending,’ and since his arrest he had disconnected his internet service and has sought help from the Lucy Faithfull Foundation and another organisation working with sex offenders.

Sentencing Sword, Recorder Kevin Hegarty QC told him: “The extreme pornography includes sexual activity with animals and people receiving serious injury.

“Having regard to the very young ages shown in the pictures, the extensive period over which this collection was amassed, and the inclusion of moving images, this is one of the more serious cases that comes before the court.