June 2010

Man admits having child porn pictures

A FORMER South Devon College NVQ assessor who downloaded child porn from the internet has been handed a suspended sentence.

Peter McArthur, of Lyn Close, Kingskerswell, admitted possessing pictures of child abuse and extreme adult porn.

Exeter Crown Court was told yesterday that McArthur, 53, had since lost his job working with post-16 students and had began looking at adult porn to ‘cure’ his impotence brought about by diabetes.

But that led to accessing child porn sites.

Prosecutor Howard Phillips said that police raided his home and seized computer equipment after receiving information that child abuse websites had been accessed.

When they spoke to McArthur he said that his internet access was unlocked and available for anyone to use.

More than 80 images were found on the computer.

But he later pleaded guilty to possession of two extreme pornographic image and six indecent images of children.

In mitigation, solicitor Ben Darby said that since the conviction, McArthur had not been able to return to teaching or continue as a personal license holder.

He said that there were relatively few images of children compared to the number of adult pornographic images.

Judge Phillip Wassall sentenced him to a six-month sentence suspended for two years.

He was also ordered to take part in an internet sex offender treatment programme.

South Devon College were unable to confirm or deny McArthur was working for them at the time the offences took place.

It was also unwilling to comment on the reasons behind him leaving its employment.

A spokesman said: “We believe from the authorities that there was an off-site incident with a former employee.

“All South Devon College employees go through a rigorous screening procedure including enhanced Criminal Records Bureau.

“Here at South Devon College we have some of the most outstanding, committed and best-trained staff in the educational sector, as recognised recently by Ofsted.”