February 2018

Bedford’s jailed for online sex chats

A “pervert” has been jailed after he was caught having sex chats online with police officers posing as teenagers.

Barry Lees, 61, of Conquest Road, Bedford, was arrested after two officers pretended to be girls called Olivia and Hannah.

He pleaded guilty at Luton Crown Court to two charges of attempting to meet a child under 16 for sexual activity and three charges of possessing indecent images of children.

He was jailed for two years.

During the trial, prosecutor Sarah Porter said: “The two officers posed as a 13 and 14-year-old girl on Chat Avenue. He asked for pictures and they made it clear how old they were.”

When officers went to his home, they seized a computer tower, with 45 category A images of child sex abuse – the most serious level.

There were 101 images at categories B and C.

The court heard he had previous convictions dating back to 1974 including an indecent assault on a female and indecent exposure.

Defending, Sam Stockwell said Lees had pleaded guilty at the earliest opportunity: “He gave full and frank admissions to the police.”

He said Lees had turned to pornography after the death of his wife and felt he was in an “isolated bubble”.

He said he will undertake treatment.

Judge Richard Foster said Lees had a “horrific record” of sexual offending.

“It is clear you are perverted and had sexual interest in young women,” he said.

He will be on the sex offenders register and must abide by a sexual harm prevention order for life.

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