May 2018

Internet paedophile who attempted suicide spared jail

AN internet paedophile who downloaded images of children being raped has escaped an immediate prison sentence after a judge gave him a chance of rehabilitation.

Tyrel Benjamin, from Newport, who was also caught with extreme pornography, had attempted suicide because of his feelings of guilt, Cardiff Crown Court heard.

Prosecutor Rosamund Rutter said the 23-year-old had 40 indecent stills and films of children stored on his Samsung mobile phone, 17 of which were classed as category A images.

These feature the most serious examples of child sexual abuse.

Most images, which also included category B and C pictures and videos, involved girls aged between six and 12, although there was one of a baby.

Miss Rutter said police initially raided Benjamin’s ex-partner’s home in Cwmcarn, who was innocent and oblivious to his crimes, where the defendant had lived but he had since moved out.

He was soon traced to Newport’s York Place and was arrested there last month.

When interviewed by detectives, the defendant admitted what he had done was “not nice” and told them “he had tried to commit suicide”.

Miss Rutter told the court that Benjamin had no previous convictions.

Paul Morris, mitigating, said his client had started watching pornography from a young age when he “wasn’t doing very well in school and his addiction had led to him looking at something different”.

He too added that Benjamin had made attempts to kill himself.

The defendant, who had been remanded in custody by magistrates, had admitted his guilt at the first opportunity.

He pleaded guilty to three counts of making indecent images of children and one charge each of possessing a prohibited image of a child and possessing 45 images of extreme pornography.

Judge Jeremy Jenkins told Mr Morris he would not be sending Benjamin into immediate custody, adding: “There is a reasonable prospect of his rehabilitation.”

But he told the defendant that his was “not a victimless crime”.

Judge Jenkins said: “These were real, live children who were being horrendously abused for the titillation and sexual enjoyment of people like you.”

But he said Benjamin had expressed “shame and genuine contrition”.

The defendant was jailed for a total of 12 months, suspended for two years, and he must complete 31 sessions of the Horizon sex offender programme.

He was made the subject of a five-year sexual harm prevention order and he must register as a sex offender for 10 years.

Benjamin must pay prosecution costs of £340 and a victim surcharge.