August 2023

Great Yarmouth chip shop owner snared by paedophile hunters


A fish and chip shop owner was confronted by online paedophile hunters after sending explicit messages and pictures to what he believed to be 12 and 13-year-old girls.

David Maynard, 43, thought he was communicating with young girls but they were in fact members of a group known as Defending the Innocent.

Norwich Crown Court heard he communicated with three profiles on a chat app called Wink, one pretending to be a 12-year-old called Chloe and others he thought were girls called Madison and Elle, both aged 13.

Prosecuting Chris Youell said: “While the adults were pretending to be those three girls he was chatting sexually to them, sending them pictures of his penis and making references to owning a chip shop.”

Video of him being confronted by members of the group outside the Fryers Delight, on Nelson Road North in Great Yarmouth, was live-streamed on Facebook shortly before he was arrested by police in July 2022.

The court was told since his arrest he no longer owns the seaside takeaway business and is living on benefits. 

Maynard, of Beck Avenue, Ormesby, had previously pleaded guilty to three counts of attempting to engage in sexual communication with a child.

A further three counts of attempting to cause a child to watch/look at an image of a sexual act will lie on file.

Suspending a two year jail sentence for two years, Recorder Michael Turner told Maynard: “There are two sides to your character – the loving family man and the individual searching and trawling the internet.”

He ordered him to do 200 hours unpaid work, 20 rehabilitation days and to attend a programme to address his sexual offending. 

A 10 year sexual harm prevention order will also bar him from owning any device capable of hiding or deleting his online search history.