August 2003

Man had 18,000 child porn images

A man is in jail today after more than 18,000 indecent images of children were found at his home.

Images of children aged as young as one were discovered on computers and discs at the home of Michael Lowrie.

A court also heard how some of the images showed children in a clearly distressed state.

He was jailed for 12 months at Chelmsford Crown Court on Friday after he admitted 23 charges of having indecent images of children.

But he also received a four-year extended sentence, which means if he offends again within four years, he will be recalled to prison.

Judge Ben Pearson also put him on the sex offenders’ register for the next ten years.

The court heard Lowrie, 45, of Barbel Road, Colchester, was picked up as part of Operation Ore – the ongoing investigation into people who have gained access to child porn websites.

His credit card details were passed on to police after he used them to get into a known pornographic internet site, and officers armed with a search warrant went to his home on November 14.

They seized two computers and discs, said Margia Mustafa, prosecuting, and when they were examined, more than 18,000 indecent images of children were found.

Roslayne Mandil-Wade, mitigating, told the court there was no question of Lowrie selling or distributing the images.