November 2018

Parents’ fury as it’s revealed paedophile lives close to primary school and children’s park

Gareth Roberts, of Brough, has not been jailed

Horrified parents have reacted with fury after discovering a paedophile is living in a housing development popular with families – not far from a primary school and a children’s park.

Married Gareth Roberts, of Brough, was caught with indecent images of children as young as four years old in “discernible pain or distress”.

Hundreds of images were found when the 36-year-old’s computer was forensically examined after police seized it from his home in Munstead Way on March 2, 2017.

He was sentenced on Monday after 58 images at category A – the most serious – 228 at category B, and 133 category C images were found.

The IT consultant had installed a file-shredding application which meant the real number of images downloaded during his six years of offending could not be established.

He was sentenced on the number of images police were able to recover.

Following publication of his court case and the details of his suspended sentence, parents took to Facebook to express their shock and anger at having the “pervert” living amongst them.

His house is just two streets away from the popular children’s park in the centre of the housing development, and around the corner from Welton Primary School.

One mum wrote: “How has he got away with this? Feel sick that he lives on the next street!”

Another replied: “WOW!! You just never know who lives down the road. That’s so scary to think how close we live to him.”

Another mum said: “Too near to Welton school in my opinion.”

A concerned dad said: “Terrible you never no who you live near.”

Since the initial story, published on Tuesday, photographs of Roberts have been circulated on Facebook by parents to warn others.

As reported, Roberts had searched for images using terms including “pre-teen hardcore” and “allowed my underage daughter to sleep with men”, Hull Crown Court heard.

Ben Campbell, prosecuting, said they were of boys and girls as young as four. Mr Campbell said the officer who examined the equipment noted that “in some of the images there was discernible pain or distress suffered by the child”.

Roberts had also used a service called “IRC”, or internet relay chat, to “chat to others with an interest in indecent images”.

He admitted three offences of making indecent photographs of children between 2011 and 2017. He had no previous convictions. In interview, Roberts described himself as “highly computer literate”.

The court heard Roberts was a “a married man who has managed to repair the damage his behaviour has caused to his relationship, to a degree, although it’s still a work in progress”.

Roberts was sentenced to ten months in jail, suspended for 12 months.

Judge Mark Bury told him: “You don’t need me to tell you, Mr Roberts, that each time you view an image of this type it represents an abused child.

“Some child somewhere has been abused in the making of the image, and the reason that happens is because there is a market for such images fuelled by people like you, and therefore you must be under no illusion, as must anybody else, how serious this offending is.”

Roberts was ordered to have up to 50 days rehabilitation, and pay £500 costs within 28 days.