January 2018

Publishing executive, 59, who edited children’s magazines and was found with more than 100 ‘hardcore’ child abuse images films is spared jail

A former publishing boss behind the websites Nursery World and Children & Young People has escaped prison after he was caught with more than 100 child abuse images films.  

Stovin Hayter, 59, was head of online content for publishing giants Haymarket Media, having previously been editor of their magazine Children Now.

Yesterday he was sentenced to 16 months imprisonment, suspended for two years and must complete 200 hours community service work.

He pleaded guilty to three counts of possessing child sexual abuse images he had downloaded at his home of twenty years that he shares with his husband in Acton, London

Hayter, a graduate of South Africa’s University of KwaZulu-Natal, joined Haymarket in 2001 and also edited the magazine Young People Now before becoming online chief in 2006.

Isleworth Crown Court heard he downloaded 109 of the most serious hardcore movies, plus two stills, a further 48 movies and two stills in the medium range and one still at the lowest range.

The material involved young boys, some as young as twelve years-old.

The court made Hayter subject to a ten-year Sexual Harm Prevention Order and he must sign the sex offender register for the same period.

‘His husband describes him as a broken man,’ said Mr. Alistair Polson. 

‘For people who know him well for a long period of his life they are shocked and appalled by his behaviour.’

Prosecutor Mr. Bill McGivern said police raided Hayter’s home on November 22, 2016 while he was there with his husband and when asked if he knew anything about underage indecent images he replied: ‘I do.’

Computers and other electrical devices were seized, with Hayter giving police his passwords to access the disgusting images of child abuse.

‘There had been deliberate online searches of images of young or adolescent boys, some as young as twelve years-old,’ said Mr. McGivern.

When quizzed by police Hayter told them: ‘I do not deny these devices belong to me. I am truly sorry for my actions, I don’t dispute these allegations.’

Hayter had been downloading the indecent images from 2003 to a month before his arrest, describing it as an ‘addiction.’

He sought counselling after his arrest, but due to the extent of his behaviour had to move on to a psychotherapist.

‘Although broken, he is a man who can be put together again,’ said Mr. Polson.

Judge John Denniss told Hayter: ‘These offences are very serious. It is said one can make their way to the open prison gates with six clicks of a computer mouse.

‘The courts must try to halt the industrial abuse of children and their evil exploitation of children as young as twelve, which you watched.

‘You were addicted to pornography and have taken every step you can to deal with that addiction and offending,’ he added, ordering Hayter to also pay £300 costs. 

Speaking after the sentencing, an NSPCC spokesman said: ‘For indecent images to be created online a child has been abused in the real world and Hayter’s actions have helped fuel this vile trade over a considerable period of time.

‘The effects of sexual abuse can last a lifetime and it is right that Hayter has now faced justice for his actions.

‘Tech companies, government, law enforcement and charities like ours are working together to tackle this growing issue, but more needs to be done to rid the online world of this sickening material.’