May 2017

Chelmsford father admits 12 sex offences including grooming children and possessing dog porn

A Chelmsford father has admitted 12 sex offences including grooming a 14-year-old boy and inciting an underage girl to send him indecent images of herself.

Simon Collins, 52, had sexual online conversations with children and downloaded hundreds of indecent images and videos while living in his parents’ home on Moran Avenue, after breaking up with his wife.

The paedophile, who has a teenage daughter, pleaded guilty to 12 charges spanning five years at Chelmsford Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday (May 16).

Collins, who kept his head bowed throughout the hearing, spoke online with a 14-year-old boy in August 2013 about them touching each other, before arranging to meet up for sexual activity.

He also convinced a girl aged between 13 and 15 to send him sexual pictures of herself on December 2, 2010, and searched the internet for ‘familial sexual abuse’.

The pervert possessed 886 prohibited or indecent images of children as young as five, including 292 in Category A, the most serious classification for child pornography.

He also held videos showing oral sex and intercourse with dogs, as well as life-threatening acts.

Police executed a search warrant on the Moran Avenue home Collins shared with his parents and brother on January 20, 2015, after receiving intelligence about his online activity.

Prosecutor Sharon Hall said: “Chats had also been going on through Skype and other means. He was in a chat with a boy who told him he was 14 years of age.

“They talked about touching each other, and the boy said he took tablets for ADHD. They made arrangements to meet up.

“One of the pictures shows pain and suffering for a child. In a police interview he admitted everything.

“He said that all of this started from the breakup of his marriage, after he moved back into his parents’ house and he had more time to look at images on the internet.”

Collins, who has no previous convictions, will be sentenced on June 8 at Chelmsford Crown Court.

Chair of the magistrates, Malcolm Bell, said: “We have no doubt our sentencing powers are insufficient.”

When asked by our reporter whether he is sorry for his crimes, Collins replied: “Of course I am. That’s why I pleaded guilty.”

He is charged with holding three extreme animal porn movies and one video portraying life being threatened, as well as 282 Category A images, 183 in Category B, 405 in Category C and one which is prohibited.

Collins also downloaded four Category A videos, 11 in Category B and 35 in Category C.