June 2020

Paedophile ‘found it therapeutic’ to superimpose young girls’ faces onto sexual images of adults

An East Yorkshire paedophile has escaped jail after being caught with indecent images of children on his computer.

Darren Smith, 52, of Home Upon Spalding Moor, had his IP address traced by police after downloading the obscene photos and after his device was examined, it was found that he had created disgusting pictures of a woman and a 12-year-old girl and her friend.

Hull Crown Court heard that Smith was tracked down by police in June 2018, but it was not until June 21, 2019 that his devices were examined and three category A images plus one video, 60 Category B and 79 Category C images were found.

Prosecuting, Richard Thompson said that among the images were two “extreme” pictures that Smith had created in which he superimposed the face of his adult victim on a woman that was being sexually mounted by a dog, and put the faces of the girl and her friend on men with erect penises.

Mr Thompson said that when interviewed, Smith “admitted to watching porn” but “denied seeking images of children” and claimed he had been file sharing on the internet and could have downloaded the images inherently.

“In the police interview, the defendant said he created photo shop images, but had no sexual interest in [his young victim] and found it therapeutic,” said Mr Thompson.

“The victim impact statement [of the younger victim] was prepared with the assistance of her school teachers.”

In the statement, [the victim] said: “On nights I would feel alone and have suicidal thoughts going around in my mind.

“I ended up in hospital twice as I tried to overdose and it seemed as if I would never get better or have anyone to talk to.

“I can see just how much it has affected me. It’s ruined my trust in people and I’m finding it hard to let people in and open up about this as it’s embarrassing for me.

“My confidence and self-esteem have dropped leaving me feeling vulnerable.

“At this age I shouldn’t be fearful of men and how they will treat me in the future.

Judge Ahmed Nadim spared Smith of jail and issued him with a two year community order, 30 rehabilitation activity days, 250 hours of unpaid work and placed him on the Sex Offender Register.

“I would be well justified in sentencing you to go to prison today, but bearing in mind your past good character, and in the present covid scenario, I believe a community order will serve to give you the skills needed,” said Judge Nadim.

“I’m not terribly impressed by the explanation as to how or why you committed the offences.

“I accept as result of the investigation and prosecution that you sought to take your own life and your father was seriously ill, but you inflicted harm on a child who has been left damaged in many ways.”