August 2022

Married man tried to barter down £40 price tag of sex with 14-year-old ‘boy’

A married man who arranged to meet a ‘teenage boy’ for sex has walked free from court.

Ian Ferguson, 69, began chatting to an undercover officer on gay chat site FabGuys on May 13. The officer initially told him he was an 18-year-old man and the defendant said he ‘didn’t mind paying’ for sexual services.

During a sentencing hearing at Teesside Crown Court on Tuesday prosecutor Emma Atkinson said the defendant sent a picture of his genitals and asked for one in return before the officer said he was an underage- schoolboy.

She said: “The undercover operative advised the defendant that he was only 14-years-old and asked if he was ok with that. The defendant said he liked to play about and liked getting f*****.

He agreed to pay £40 for sex and there were discussions around meeting in Middlesbrough.

The court heard the defendant then later made a call checking the pair were still on before admitting he was married. Ms Atkinson said he wanted to confirm the ‘boy’ was alone and told him he was fine with his age.

Ferguson, of Whernside Crescent, Ingleby Barwick, also tried to barter down the price but was arrested on July 22.

In interview he admitted being the person responsible for the calls and messages and later pleaded guilty to arranging/facilitating the commission of a child sex offence.

Judge Carroll handed Ferguson a 20-month prison sentence suspended for two years. He must also complete 25 rehabilitation days and must comply with notification requirements for sex offenders.