September 2022

Child sex abuse images viewed because man was at a ‘low ebb’, judge is told

A paedophile who accessed more than 200 child sexual abuse images of children — including those showing girls as young as six being raped — tried in vain to avoid detection as his home was searched.

Sheffield Crown Court heard Paul Saxton (29) had thrown his mobile phone into his brother’s room during the police raid at Rockingham Road, Rawmarsh.

Officers retrieved the mobile and, when examined, it turned up evidence of almost 70 images at category A — the most extreme level.

There was also evidence he had downloaded extreme pornographic images and of web searches indicating he had an interest in young girls.

Mr Adam Walker, prosecuting, said police after received a tip-off that someone at Saxton’s home had been accessing illegal imagery.

“The defendant was seen to try to dispose of a phone but police retrieved this and the defendant then confirmed it was his,” said Mr Walker.

Saxton made no comment to police both before and after the phone was examined, Mr Walker said.

The device was found to contain evidence of 67 images at category A, 90 at category B and 43 category C, as well as two extreme pornographic images.

None of the images were accessible, which indicated they had been deleted, the court heard.

The court was told that he was working for his parents, who had their own pool and snooker business and has the support of his family.

Judge Graham Robinson told him accessing child abuse images was not a victimless crime.

He added: “Every time someone looks at the images it continues their currency on the internet.

“The more people look at it, the longer that image is circulating.

“They may be young children when these images are taken but as they grow up, it becomes traumatic to realise they are still circulating on the internet.”

The judge said he was encouraged that Saxton had his family’s support.

Saxton, who admitted three counts of making indecent images and one of possessing extreme pornography, was handed a two-year community order and told to attend 43 days of group work sessions and 55 rehabilitation activity requirement days.

He will also have to sign on the sex offenders’ register for five years.