Update: Robert Hawes has now been released and has returned to Daventry
Sickening phone call between convicted paedophile Robert Hawes and a ’10-year-old girl’
This is the disturbing phone call between convicted paedophile Robert Hawes and what he thought was a 10-year-old girl who he arranged to meet for sex in North Devon.
The 56-year-old had been on a junior rugby tour in Barnstaple with his son and had agreed to meet the underage girl in North Devon.
But in reality he was speaking to an online vigilante group of paedophile hunters who tracked him down to a holiday park in Woolacombe.
Hawes had thought he was chatting to two girls aged ten and 11 when he met them online but in reality he was talking to a group called The Hunted One, described in court as “a group of people who seek to bring justice to those who use the internet to try and engage in sexual activity with children”.
The secret group, who are based at Bromley in Kent, tipped off police after Hawes arranged to meet a ten-year-old girl.
Police arrested him before the group had a chance to confront him and the vigilante group’s evidence of the chat logs and recorded phone calls led him to admit what he had done.
The material included images of his own penis which Hawes has sent to what he believed was a child of ten.
Hawes, of Jubilee Road, Daventry, pleaded guilty to attempting to incite a child to sexual activity and attempting to meet a child after grooming.
He was jailed for a total of 20 months by Recorder Mr Donald Tait at Exeter Crown Court.
He told him: “The two girls in this case were fictitious but you believed one was ten and one was 11. Your offending was aggravated by the persistent nature of it over a period from December 2016 to March this year.
“It is also aggravated by the fact you sent picture of your private parts to a girl who you thought was ten with comments about where you wanted to put it.
“A prison sentence is inevitable to mark the seriousness of this type of offending. I accept by the time of the arranged meeting you had changed your mind and would not have gone through with it.
“Nevertheless you made persistent attempts to contact what you thought were young people and persisted in trying to meet one of them before you changed your mind.”
Mr Jonathan Barnes, prosecuting, said Hawes met the ‘girls’ in internet chat rooms and sent them sexualised messages. The so-called ten-year-old was in fact a creation of the vigilante group called The Hunted One.
They recorded his chat logs and a phone call in which he tried to arrange a meeting in the London area in April.
Hawes did not make the rendez-vous on April 7 and instead went with his son on a rugby tour to Barnstaple. The vigilantes traced him to the holiday park where he was staying.
They alerted police who arrested him before the group could find him.