August 2022

Paedophile arrested at Leeds Bradford Airport after travelling from Ireland to meet ‘13-year-old girl’

A man from Dublin travelled nearly 200 miles by plane in order to have sex with what he thought was a 13-year-old girl in Leeds.

David McGregor, from Morning Star Avenue, had been messaging what he thought was a girl named “Sophie” on Facebook, with the intention of “becoming her boyfriend” and eventually having sexual relations with her

However, “Sophie” was actually a paedophile hunter group, who met McGregor, 49, when he landed at Leeds Bradford Airport on June 20 this year.

The court heard that the conversation, which was struck up on Facebook in April, was not sexual in nature at first, but McGregor asked Sophie not to tell her mum he was talking to her, and that she should trust him.

He would soon ask her if she knew of any hotels in Leeds, and whether she “would like to be with an older man”.

McGregor then sent a picture of himself and asked for one of her, before asking whether he could become her boyfriend.

Prosecuting, Gareth Andrew told the court: “On May 10, he made his intentions clear, saying they would ‘make love’ when he came over.

“He made graphic remarks about what he wanted to do.”

The court head McGregor had booked a double room in a Leeds City Centre hotel.

On his arrival in Leeds Bradford Airport the following month, he was approached by the paedophile hunter group and the police were called.

When he was arrested and searched, McGregor was found to have three condoms.

The court was told McGregor was later interviewed by police and said he “did not have recollection” of the conversation between him and the Facebook account as being sexual.

However, McGregor eventually pleaded guilty to arranging or facilitating commission of a child sex offence, and attempted sexual communication with a child.

Sentencing McGregor, Judge Simon Batiste said: “You made contact with a decoy profile known as Sophie.

“She indicated from the start that she was 13 and living in Leeds – you were aware of this.

“You made clear to her you wanted to engage in sexual acts – your intentions were clear.

“This was a visit you undertook to satisfy your paedophilic needs.

“There was a significant degree of planning, there was grooming behaviour and a disparity in age.

“You were a somewhat isolated individual, and you were in alcohol when communications took place.

“You travelled to another country to commit this offence.”

Judge Batiste sentenced McGregor to three years and three months imprisonment.