July 2018

Man told paedophile hunter posing as girl he was having sex with doll ‘pretending it’s you’

When Anthony Franklin chatted to a ‘youngster’ online he showed her a photo of a doll.

And when the ‘child’ said it looked really big for a doll he told her: “I’m having sex with her now, pretending it’s you.”

Franklin was in fact talking to an online paedophile hunter posing as a 12-year-old girl from Nottingham.

And after making sexual advances to her, as well as another hunter, he made arrangements to meet the youngster in Bristol.

Franklin, 34, of Dundonald Road in Redland, pleaded guilty to two charges of attempting to incite a child to to engage in a penetrative sexual act.

He also admitted attempting to meet a child following sexual grooming.

The recorder Miss Joanna Martin QC adjourned sentence to September 28.

Julian Howells, prosecuting, said Franklin first chatted online to a woman from voluntary group Defending The Innocent, posing as “Lucy aged 12”.

Franklin gave his name as Frank, aged 33, and sent a photo of himself dressed in a crown and robes, Bristol Crown Court heard. (August 3, 2018)

Mr Howells said the conversation moved to sexual matters and Franklin sent her a photo of his penis, telling her he wanted sex.

In a separate online encounter Franklin chatted to another woman posing as “Katie aged 12 from Manchester”.

Mr Howells said: “Pretty quickly it turned to sexual chat. He asked her for a picture and she asked him what he was looking for and he said he was looking for sex.”

With that Franklin sent her a picture of his penis, as well as a picture of a large sex doll.

Mr Howells told the judge: “She said ‘It’s really big for a doll’. He said ‘I’m having sex with her now, pretending it’s you’.”

Franklin suggested they meet at Cribbs Causeway, before giving her his home address.

He asked her to bring a skirt and a pair of black knickers, promised he would use a condom and told her: “Hopefully you won’t have the skirt on for long.”

But as Franklin waited in the street instead of a child two men turned up, the court heard.

He denied he was there to meet a child, said he had Asperger’s syndrome and dropped to the ground.

Police and an ambulance were called and he was then taken to Patchway Police Station.

He told police it was obvious the people he sent messages to online were adults, he just played along with them and was curious who would turn up when he arranged a meeting.

The court heard in 2013 he was handed a three-year community order for downloading child abuse images.

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