A “dangerous” South Lakeland sex offender who committed crimes against a teenage girl has been jailed for four-and-a-half years.
Steven Andrew Airey was said to have initially “groomed” his 14-year-old victim by giving her cigarettes, alcohol and expensive gifts. The female later stated she had suffered a “great deal of anguish” as a result of 50-year-old Airey’s historical sex crimes.
“I buried the issue deep in my mind to avoid having to think about it, but it has always been there,” she wrote in an impact statement
Carlisle Crown Court also heard Airey was a “committed collector” of disturbing indecent images of “very young children”. These were found on a mobile phone he refused to provide the passcode for.
Police eventually gained access to the device, however. They discovered more than 1,600 illegal images – 564 classed in category A, the most serious.
Airey admitted two indecent assault charges, and offences of indecency and sexual activity with a child. He also admitted making and distributing child porn images.
Judge James Adkin jailed Airey, of Hall Road, Burneside, and imposed an extended three-year licence period. Airey must sign the sex offenders’ register and follow the terms of a sexual harm prevention order, both for life.
“I am satisfied you are a dangerous offender,” Judge Adkin told him.
South Lakeland man admits downloading hundreds of indecent images of children
A South Lakeland man has admitted downloading more than 1,600 indecent images of children – and distributing some of them.
Almost a third of the prohibited pictures made by Steven Andrew Airey, of Hall Road, Burneside, are classed in the most serious bracket of category A, Carlisle Crown Court heard.
Airey, 50, entered guilty pleas to six offences when he appeared over a video link from HMP Preston in front of Judge Peter Hughes QC today
Airey admitted making 564 category A indecent photographs of children, along with 284 category B images and 762 in category C. This was done during a period between February and August this year
He further admitted three counts of distributing an unspecified number of category A, B and C photographs, between April and August.
Judge Hughes heard it was “a very bad case of its type”. “The images are particularly distasteful,” said prosecutor Gerard Rogerson. “There is the added factor that there is distribution of the images involved.”
Sentencing was adjourned by Judge Hughes, who directed that a background report on the defendant should be prepared by the probation service.
Airey will next appear at the crown court on January 23. In the meantime Airey was remanded in custody.