March 2018

Parents’ shock as paedophile Fareham Scout leader dodges jail

Parents have told of their shock after a Scout leader caught with child sexual abuse images avoided jail.

Pervert John Michaels was caught by police with 120 films on his computer, which included vile images of children as young as two being abused.

At a hearing at Portsmouth Crown Court it was revealed the 34-year-old – who is known as John Rutter – had been a leader at 1st Fareham Scouts for about 18 years.

Michaels, of Westfield Avenue, Fareham, admitted 10 counts of making indecent photographs of children between February and July 2017, Portsmouth Crown Court heard.

The shamed Scout was sentenced to 12 months in prison, suspended for 18 months.

Sentencing, Judge Timothy Mousley QC said: ‘These were disgusting images of children being abused, some as young as two years old. It is not just about the type of moving images, but the quantity.’

As well as finding the indecent films – which included some at category A, the highest level of abuse – police found a piece of software on his computer used to search for child sexual abuse videos and images

A link to a bestiality website was also found on his laptop, the court heard.

Judge Mousley also enforced a sexual harm prevention order for the next 10 years.

Michaels’ electronic devices will be registered with the police and access to the internet will be restricted. He is set to be barred from working with children and vulnerable adults.