February 2018

Teaching assistant had nearly 10,000 sexual images of children

A TEACHING assistant had nearly 10,000 indecent images of children and software with which he could share them with other people, York Crown Court heard.

Joseph Edward Wharton’s illegal videos included one of two hours featuring six children including one aged between two and four years being sexually abused, said Laura Addy, prosecuting.

He had worked with children who had hearing or visual disabilities during his time at nine schools, three of the schools during the time he had been downloading and viewing the indecent images.

Wharton, 32, of Valley Road, Scarborough, pleaded guilty to five charges of possessing indecent images of children and three of possessing indecent images with a view to distributing them.

He was jailed for two years and put on the sex offenders’ register and made subject to a sexual harm prevention order, both for ten years, and banned indefinitely from working with children.

Police found the two-hour video, plus nine photographs of the worst kind of child abuse, 15 videos and 9,894 photographs of the least serious form of abuse, and 15 videos and two photographs of other child abuse, on Wharton’s computer equipment.