January 2018

Addict caught with 45,000 indecent images makes sick confession

A self-confessed paedophile was caught with more than 45,000 indecent photographs of children, including pictures he had printed.

Police paid 49-year-old Peter Crawford a visit at his home in Brough after receiving intelligence such material was being downloaded at his address.

Phillip Evans, prosecuting, told Hull Crown Court that officers seized a “raft” of equipment during the search, including mobile phones, computer towers, desk tops, hard drives and pen drives, as well as printed pictures.

Mr Evans said: “The defendant was interviewed, as is the practice of the police, on the day of the seizure, before any analysis had taken place, and to his credit the defendant fully admitted there would be indecent photographs of children on his computer equipment.”

The analysis showed there were 109 category A images, the most serious, 504 at category B, and 44,814 category C images.

Crawford was questioned again about the material, and was just as candid.

Mr Evans said: “Taking the two interviews together, the defendant confessed to being a paedophile. He had dowloaded this material as a stimulus, and indeed was viewing this material on a daily basis, and had for around ten years.”

Recorder Ray Singh said the offending actually spanned from 2005 to 2017.

Crawford’s “preference” was for girls aged between ten and 15, the court heard.

Mr Evans said: “One possible point of conflict in this case is that the defendant insisted that his interest in children was entirely confined to the cerebral activity of looking at images, and that never transferred to real life.

“For their part, the police have completed an application for a sexual harm prevention order (SHPO), which seeks, as it would, to not take the chance and to prohibit in round terms unsupervised contact with children under the age of 16.”

Crawford, of Freeman Avenue, Brough, admitted three offences of possessing indecent photographs of children. He had no previous convictions.

Jailing Crawford for eight months, the judge told him: “It is incorrect to describe this as pornography; this is abuse of young children. You have fuelled the demand for this type of material. If people like you refrained from looking at these pictures, the demand would cease.”

Crawford must register as a sex offender for ten years, and was made subject to a sexual harm prevention order for the same period.