August 2018

Pervert snared by paedophile hunters trying to meet schoolgirl at 1am

A pervert was snared by paedophile hunters after chatting to two schoolgirls over the internet and trying to meet one.

David Nicholson used an online dating app to message who he had thought were a 13-year-old and a 15-year-old but were, in fact, fake profiles set-up by members of Dark Justice.

The 44-year-old was immediately told the girls’ ages but continued to chat to them and suggested meeting so they could “kiss, cuddle and watch films together”, Newcastle Crown Court was told.

Nicholson then arranged to meet the 13-year-old a few hours later, at 1am in the morning, on Roker Terrace, in Sunderland, but was instead approached by Dark Justice.

The police were called and the pervert, now living at Gatacre Street, Blyth, was arrested.

His mobile phone was also seized and he was found to have downloaded 13 indecent images of children – 12 category C and one category B – and three prohibited images of youngsters.

Now, Nicholson has been given a community order and been told he must take part in a sex offenders’ treatment programme after a judge gave him a chance to stay out of prison to address his “unhealthy fascination in post-pubescent girls”.

Sentencing Nicholson after he pleaded guilty to two counts of possessing indecent images of a child, two of attempting to communicate with a child for sexual gratification and one of possessing a prohibited image of a child

Recorder Ben Nolan QC said: “I’m prepared to avoid what would be a relatively short custodial sentence so that the interests of the public can be better protected if you go on a sex offenders’ treatment programme.”

The court was told that members of Dark Justice set-up two fake profiles of two girls, aged 13 and 15, on an online dating app last month.

On July 16, Nicholson began separately chatting to the two girls, despite being told their ages.

He didn’t, however, lie about his age and told them he was 44.

Vince Ward, prosecuting, said Nicholson suggested meeting-up with both youngsters to “kiss, cuddle and watch films” but only actually make plans to meet the 13-year-old.

Mr Ward added: “They made arrangements to meet at 1am and he arrived at the meeting place, on Roker Terrace, but two members of Dark Justice were there to meet him in the normal way.”

The court was told Nicholson had no previous convictions and had pleaded guilty at the first opportunity.

Giving him a three-year community order, Recorder Nolan added: “It seems to me that he had an unhealthy fascination in post-pubescent girls. That needs to be addressed and can be addressed.”

Nicholson was also made subject of a Sexual Harm Prevention Order for five years and must sign the Sex Offenders’ Register for the same period of time.