July 2017

Man, 28, caught in Swindon ‘paedophile hunter’ sting admits guilt

A MAN who was caught trying to meet a 14-year-old girl in the town centre in a ‘paedophile hunter’ sting has been released on bail by a judge.

Mark Smith pleaded guilty to a charge of attempting to meet up with a child after sexual grooming.

And the 28-year-old also admitted attempting to incite a child to engage in sexual conduct when he appeared at Swindon Crown Court.

Both charges relate to a 14-year-old girl called Lou, which was in fact a false profile put up online by a self styled paedophile hunter.

Smith, of Mulberry Grove, Rodbourne Cheney, admitted both offences which took place between Monday June 19 and Friday June 23.

As a result of his guilty pleas he now has to register as a sex offender with the total amount of time he must continue to do so determined by the sentence he receives.

Judge Robert Pawson adjourned the case to Friday, August 18, so the probation service can compile a pre-sentence report and released Smith on bail.

Smith was arrested at about 6.30pm on Thursday, June 22, when he went to meet up with ‘Lou’ outside Primark in the town centre.