A pervert who skipped bail after admitting charges over a computer collection of indecent child images has answered for his crimes, almost five years later.
Ian Dolan absconded between admitting the offences, at Durham Crown Court, on September 5, 2013, and his scheduled sentencing hearing, on October 2, that year.
A bench warrant was issued for his arrest when he failed to appear for sentence and police subsequently appealed as to his whereabouts, amid belief he may have fled the country, possibly living in Thailand.
Having been at large for more than four-and-a-half years the now 51-year-old offender was finally picked up, however, on a European Arrest Warrant, in Switzerland.
He was detained by Swiss authorities while extradition procedures were put in motion, but as Dolan did not contest them, he was soon returned to the UK.
The ex-fugitive was brought before magistrates in County Durham on May 5, and six days later appeared back at the crown court, where he admitted further charges over the images, as well as breaching bail in 2013.
In total, he admitted 36 counts, over the downloading of several thousand indecent images, traced through examination of two computer hard drives seized by police from his home, in Sampson Place, Newton Aycliffe, on November 19, 2012.
Chris Baker, prosecuting, said 635 still images and 152 videos were classed in the most serious category for such material, featuring girls as young as 11 being raped by adult males, while there were 70 extreme pornographic images, containing scenes of bestiality
Mr Baker said relevant terms were used for computer searches for the images, while software was installed allowing for anonymous browsing to take place.
When interviewed, at the time, he claimed he was unaware how the images got there.
The court was told Dolan has one previous relevant conviction, for indecently touching the breasts of an underage girl, in 2002.
Steven Reed, mitigating, told the court: “There’s little I can say, except they (the indecent images) were in his possession.”
Jailing him for 18-months, including six months for evading the law while “on the run”, since 2013, Judge Christopher Prince said there were, “a reasonably significant” number of offending images, collected over, “a significant period”.
Dolan will also be subject to future restrictions under the terms of a Sexual Harm Prevention Order, and must register as a sex offender, in both cases for ten years.
The judge ordered forfeiture and destruction of the computer equipment on which the images were found by police.