September 2017

Pervert jailed for second time this year

A man was jailed for the second time this year for trying to meet what he believed was an underage girl, for sex.

Having completed a previous 22-week sentence over an attempted liaison with a 14-year-old girl, in a police ‘sting’ in January, Wayne Chester is now starting a 21-month jail term, having become the latest paedophile to fall foul of Guardians of the North vigilantes.

Durham Crown Court heard that the latest offences for which the 43-year-old defendant answered, were actually committed last September, and he was on bail for them when he was, again, caught out, in the police-run Operation Ascension, in January.

Jonathan Walker, prosecuting, said a member of Guardians of the North set up an online social media profile, supposedly posted by 14-year-old ‘Amelia’, accompanied by a randomly-selected image of a girl of about that age.

Chester responded, telling her she was, “beautiful”, and ‘she’ replied making it clear to him she was only 14.

He asked if she liked older men and sent her an intimate image of himself.

Chester told her he liked younger girls and asked her to send indecent images of herself, but she did not comply with his request.

The following day he asked her to move on to a different messenger site so he could make contact with her ‘friends’, who, in reality, were also decoys, posted by the paedophile hunting group.

Mr Walker said just three days after first contacting ‘Amelia’, Chester arranged a meeting, in Bishop Auckland.

When he was spotted looking furtively round at the rendez-vous venue, police were informed and arrested Chester.

When interviewed, he denied knowledge of any of the online exchanges.

But Chester, from Salford, Greater Manchester, and formerly of Cosgrove Avenue, Bishop Auckland, admitted two counts of attempting to incite a girl to engage in sexual activity and one of attempting to meet a child following sexual grooming.

Holly Betke, mitigating, urged Recorder Rachael Harrison to impose a suspended prison sentence to enable Chester to attend a sex offender treatment programme to address his problems.

But, imposing an immediate sentence, Recorder Harrison said he had actively sought out and attempted to meet several young girls within a short period of his initial contact.

Chester must comply with police notification as a sex offender for ten years and remains subject of a five-year Sexual Harm Prevention Order, imposed when he was last jailed.

July 2017

Pervert caught twice in 5 months

A MAN fell for online ‘stings’ to catch adults attempting to contact underage girls for sex twice in the space of five months, a court heard.

Wayne Chester, 43, recently completed the custodial element of a 20-week prison sentence imposed at Durham Crown Court on May 5, after admitting attempting to incite a child to engage in sexual activity through grooming.

It stemmed from his sexualised online conversations with what he thought was a 14-year-old girl, culminating with him sending ‘her’ a photograph of his private parts.

The court heard in reality Chester, formerly of Cosgrove Avenue, Bishop Auckland, was conversing with a fictitious girl, ‘Phoebe Lees’.

Undercover police officers set up her false profile, as part of Operation Ascension, in early January.

But on his return to court Chester, now said to be living in Salford, Greater Manchester, admitted charges of attempting to incite a girl to engage in sexual activity and attempting to meet a child following sexual grooming.

The court heard it related to him trying to meet what he thought was a girl aged 13 to 15, called Amelia, following online chat, last September.

He was, however, falling for a trap set by paedophile hunters Guardians of the North, as Amelia did not exist.

Chester was bailed to return to court for sentence on September 1, but he remains subject to registration as a sex offender, for seven years.