August 2023

Convicted paedophile buys phone without telling police

A convicted paedophile failed to tell police about his new phone.

Shane Upton from Cardiff was already under a suspended prison sentence after sharing indecent images and attempting to incite a girl aged under 13 to engage in sexual activity.

The 34-year-old, of Pen-Y-Lan Road in Roath, was put under a sexual harm prevention order last November which meant he had to inform police within three days if he purchased a mobile phone which had internet access. In June this year he bought one from CEX.

Prosecutor Emma Harris told Cardiff Crown Court: “On June 5 he got in contact with his probation officer and indicated he had a new phone and a new phone number. The probation officer was concerned he may have breached the sexual harm prevention order.”

Ten days later a police officer visited Upton’s home and examined the phone, finding it was connected to the internet.

Upton later pleaded guilty to breaching the order, which had been made last November alongside a 17-month prison sentence suspended for 18 months.

That came after he had been convicted of three counts of distributing and three counts of possessing indecent images of children as well as the attempted incitement of sexual activity.

Ms Harris said that when Upton was arrested for the breach, he claimed he “did not think about disclosing ownership of the phone as he did not have contact details to pass the information on”.

The judge, Recorder Greg Bull KC, agreed. “He told his probation officer of the purchase,” said the judge. “I’m happy to accept this was a stupid error on his part in not understanding the order.”

Mr Sharp added that his client previously had a long-term drinking issue but has benefited from an alcohol abstinence order.

Recorder Bull then told Upton he would be making a 12-month community order with 25 hours of unpaid work.

Upton, who receives Universal Credit, must also pay prosecution costs of £420 at a rate of £20 a month.