January 2018

Convicted paedophile, 39, claims it’s ‘too dangerous’ to send him home after vigilantes snared him trying to have sex with a girl, 14, ‘because he thought it was legal in UK’

A Pakistani paedophile who claimed he didn’t realise it was illegal to have sex with 14-year-olds intends to use his conviction for grooming to help him claim asylum in the UK. 

Adil Sultan, 39, thought he was chatting to a schoolgirl online, where he encouraged her to send him explicit photos of herself and meet up with him for sex.

But he was actually exchanging messages with the vigilante group Guardians of the North, who intercepted him and handed him over to the police.

He has now been jailed for 17 months after pleading guilty to attempting to meet a child following sexual grooming.

Newcastle Crown Court heard Sultan, who had posed as a 25-year-old and used a fake online name, believed ‘it was ok’ to have sex with a girl of 14. 

He now claims his conviction means he cannot return to his homeland, as anger over a recent child rape case means it is now unsafe for him. 

Instead, he plans to apply for asylum in the UK.

Footage shows Sultan being confronted by members of the Guardians group after he travelled from his home in Middlesbrough to Sunderland, thinking he was meeting a girl called Laura. 

After he was handed over police and pleaded guilty to a charge, Judge Penny Moreland sentenced him to 17 months behind bars with ten years sex offender registration and sexual harm prevention order.

The judge told him: ‘You used a false name. You said you were 25 when in fact you are 39.

‘Very quickly Laura told you she was 14. Nonetheless, you went on to discuss having penetrative sexual activity with her.

‘The conversation very quickly became sexual and you were asking for indecent images of herself.

‘Your barrister tells me you thought it was OK to have sex with 14-year-olds. That is no excuse and offers you no mitigation.’

Judge Moreland asked Mr Rafiq to clarify that it was the fact that it was not OK to have sex with 14-year-olds that Sultan did not understand.

Mr Rafiq replied: ‘He did not understand that.’