[A] PERVERT who offered cash in exchange for illegal images of boys has been sent to prison.
Carlisle Crown Court heard Malcolm Porter, 24, was brought to justice after police searched his city home, in 2015, when he was a university student.
The seizure of computer equipment and a phone revealed a catalogue of child sex offences committed over many months.
Some of his criminal conduct was said to have occurred while he ran a business photographing cycling competitors, including children. Using his contacts list, the court heard, Porter contacted boys in their early teens, engaging them in “disgusting and perverted discussions” about sexual activity.
Following his arrest, Cumbria Constabulary’s Digital Media Investigation Unit seized devices belonging to Porter and found that between 2013 and 2015 he had been accessing indecent images of children. Porter would then share indecent images via social media apps and online chatrooms.
Evidence was also found of Porter using his photography company to engage with children and offer them money for indecent images.
He was sentenced at the crown court today (THURS) having admitted 15 offences. These were nine counts of making an indecent photograph of a child; five illegal image distribution charges; and one offence of attempting to cause a 13-year-old boy to engage in sexual activity.
Hundreds of indecent images were recovered by police, 294 of them classed in category A – the most serious – with the youngest child featured aged just one.
Porter, of Burnside, Eddleston, near Peebles, was jailed for 28 months by Judge Peter Davies. Porter must sign the sex offenders’ register for 10 years and abide by the terms of an indefinite sexual harm prevention order.
Detective Constable Carolyn Willacy, Digital Media Investigation Unit, said: “Porter would use his own photography business to meet children and attempt to entice them into sharing indecent images with him.
“In total Porter’s devices held over 1,500 indecent images of children which he would share with people for mutual sexual gratification.
“We will continue to prosecute those who abuse children by engaging in this sort of behaviour.
“It is important that young people realise the dangers that lurk online as there are people out there who are intent on exploiting children.
“We encourage anyone who has any suspicions of any sort of abuse to contact us so we can investigate.”