November 2018

This is why man who sent naked pics to ‘schoolboy’ walked free from court

A support worker with vulnerable adults was snared by paedophile hunters when he sent naked pictures to a ‘schoolboy’.

Ryan Taylor, 23, of Wulstan Street, Kirkdale, believed he was chatting online with a 14-year-old child in December last year.

Liverpool Crown Court heard he sent ‘Thomas’ two pictures of his penis and even asked to see a photo of his younger brother.

But the victim was actually a decoy working for the group Justice For The Innocent and a sting team The Innocence Keepers.

Taylor, whose profile bore the message “any young lads”, first sent Thomas a message saying “hi” on the dating app Grindr.

Kate Gaskell, prosecuting, said he replied “14, u?” and their chat quickly turned into Taylor referring to “penetrative sexual activity”.

The conversation moved to WhatsApp, on which Taylor sent a picture of himself and his two younger nephews.

Ms Gaskell said: “He also requested on finding out Thomas had a younger 11-year-old brother for him to send pictures of that brother.”

The paedophile hunters did not send any photographs in response to his requests and did not arrange to meet up.

However, they confronted Taylor on December 30, after tricking him into revealing his address in a covert phone call.

Ms Gaskell said: “The defendant received a call on the day in question from a person purporting to be a courier with a parcel for him.”

When confronted, in an encounter filmed and streamed live on Facebook, Taylor confessed and police were called.

Ms Gaskell said: “He said to police that he knew the boy he was talking to was too young and he needed help.”

His mobile phones revealed he had other explicit WhatsApp conversations, but the recipients couldn’t be shown to be under 16.

Taylor, who has no previous convictions, admitted attempted sexual communication with a child – an offence introduced last year.

Judge Aubrey said since Taylor was snared by the “paedophile hunters” he had repeatedly asked for help.

He said sentencing him was “extremely difficult” as sexual communication with a child was a comparatively new offence.

The judge said it carried a maximum sentence of two years in jail and no guidelines had been issued by the Sentencing Council.

Judge Aubrey said there was no actual child, he was of previous good character and pleaded guilty at the earliest opportunity.

He said: “It’s quite apparent from the contents of the pre-sentence report firstly that you have indeed a number of issues.

“But significantly, and this is an extremely important factor, you recognise those issues and you recognise that you require assistance in order to confront those issues.”

Judge Aubrey added: “You and indeed the public would be better served by the imposition of a community order.”

He handed Taylor a three-year community order, a sex offender treatment programme and 120 hours of unpaid work.

The judge told Taylor to comply with a Sexual Harm Prevention Order and sign on the Sex Offenders Register for five years.