A Whitby man has been jailed for three years after police in Australia uncovered sickening images and online conversations about abusing children.
Nathan Peter Smith, 29, of Helredale Road, was jailed by York Crown Court last week after pleading guilty to three counts of possessing indecent images of children and one count of distributing indecent images of children.
Police in South Australia arrested a local man on suspicion of distributing images of child abuse and discovered images that Smith had sent him along with an 89-page online chat of the pair discussing how they would like to abuse children in real life.
Smith was arrested by North Yorkshire Police after being alerted by officers in Australia via the National Crime Agency’s Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre (CEOP).
Officers seized Smith‘s computer and mobile phones and discovered over 300 images of child abuse, including 59 photographs and three videos graded at category A – the most severe – 56 photographs and one video at category B and 211 images graded at category C .
Detective Constable Graeme Boast of North Yorkshire Police’s Online Abuse and Exploitation Investigation Team, said: “Behind every image is a child who has suffered unimaginable abuse and by sharing such images, paedophiles are fuelling the demand for these abhorrent crimes. This sentence sends a clear message that you can’t hide behind technology and no matter where in the world you choose to share your sickening images, you will be found out and brought to justice.
“Clearly Smith has not learned from his previous jail term for similar offences and this latest sentence demonstrates how seriously the court viewed his offending.”
Smith was also issued with a sexual harm prevention order until further order.
If you are concerned about anyone you know who you suspect has a sexual interest in children, or you want to get help yourself, we urge you to make use of the Lucy Faithfull Foundation’s Stop it Now campaign, visit www.stopitnow.org.uk or call their confidential hotline on 0800 1000 900.
If you have been the victim of sexual abuse, whether it is happening now or in the past, please tell the police. Even if it is not possible to put an offender before the courts, it’s important that you are offered the support and advice that is available. Your information could also help to protect other victims. All reports will be fully investigated.
• To report a sexual crime to North Yorkshire Police, call 101
• If you are in immediate danger, always call 999
• If you prefer not to go direct to the police and you are not in immediate danger, you can contact a sexual assault referral centre (SARC) in your area. Bridge House, North Yorkshire’s SARC can be contacted on 01904 669339.
• Childline 24-hour helpline 0800 1111
• NSPCC’s online safety helpline on 0800 800 5002
• If you are worried about a child, call the NSPCC’s helpline: 0800 800 5000