Indecent images prove downfall for Durham man of past ‘exemplary’ character
A man aged 78, of previous “exemplary character”, was jailed over his “active” interest in indecent child images.
Raymond Cockburn downloaded hundreds of images, some featuring very young children in obvious states of distress, while he also distributed one video featuring such material to a like-minded individual.
Durham Crown Court heard that he came to the attention of cyber-crime investigators after suspicions were reported over his computer search engine activity.
Jonathan Harley, prosecuting, said: “He had been active in a social media forum in which child abuse was discussed.”
Examination of a laptop revealed 384 offending images, 159 in the most serious category, amassed between 2014 and August last year.
Mr Harley said more than 40 were videos, of up to 34 minutes in duration.
Cockburn, of Shepherd’s Court, Gilesgate, Durham, admitted three counts of making, and one of distribution of indecent images of children, plus one of possessing extreme pornography.
Jailing him for a year, Recorder Caroline Wigin said despite his age and previous good character she could not avoid an immediate prison sentence given the nature of some of the images.
Cockburn was also made subject of a Sexual Harm Prevention Order and registration as a sex offender, both for ten years.
Pensioner, 78, admits possessing and sharing indecent images
A 78-year-old man has pleaded guilty to possessing hundreds of indecent images of children and animals that he also shared with others on social media.
Raymond Cockburn was charged with four counts of possessing and making offensive images and videos of children between 2004 and 2016, as well as one count of distributing indecent pictures.
The pensioner, of Shepherds Court, Gilesgate, Durham, bowed his head as the charges were read out in Newton Aycliffe Magistrates’ Court earlier this week.
Joanne Hesse, prosecuting, said: “The defendant was found in possession of a large number of indecent images – there were some images distributed on a social media platform including category A images.”
She added that his possession of around 485 images was aggravated by the age of the children pictures and the fact that videos were also found on his computer.
Of the hundreds of files found that had been downloaded between August 14 and August 2016, 159 were the most offensive category A images, with 98 category B images and 227 category C images.
An extreme image including animals was also found.
Cockburn was ordered to sign the sex offenders register ahead of his next court appearance for sentencing at Durham Crown Court in September.