October 2018

Pervert who chatted to ’13-year-old’ girl online jailed for breaching order

John Bateman has been jailed for 32 months after breaching the terms of a sexual harm prevention order — imposed after he was convicted of possessing extreme pornographic images, distributing indecent photos and having barred images of children.

Bateman, 62, of Cowes, admitted he had breached the order by chatting online with a ’13-year-old-girl’ using an app which he later deleted from his phone.

However, he claimed he believed the person he was chatting to was actually an adult, a hearing at the Isle of Wight Crown Court was told yesterday (Thursday).

His action put him in breach of a two-year suspended sentence imposed at Winchester Crown Court on June 19 which involved him being in possession of extreme pornographic images and barred images of children.

The court heard Bateman was taking part in a conversation using an app with someone purporting to be a 13-year-old schoolgirl, although he maintained he believed the person he was talking to was most likely another adult male pretending to be a 13-year-old girl, said Kelly Brocklehurst prosecuting.

For Bateman, Oscar Vincent said his client had moved to Cowes following his conviction.

He had been isolated and had taken to using the app, for the most part for activities that were legal.

He had been talking to a ‘fellow fantasist’ when he committed the offence.

Mr Vincent said: “Officers came to his home unannounced. He deleted the app in a moment of panic.”