Pervert banned from using internet for 10 years after sharing indecent images of children online

The case was heard at Teesside Crown Court.
The case was heard at Teesside Crown Court.

A pervert who shared child abuse images online has been jailed for 22 months.

John Lenaghan, 41, defied a previous court order by creating dozens of email and social media accounts to enable contact with other paedophiles.

When one account was closed he would open another using a fake identity, Teesside Crown Court heard.

"Police received information about an email address used to upload indecent images," said Harry Hadfield, prosecuting.

"Officers went to a property in Hartlepool, and upon their arrival the curtains twitched.

"Lenaghan was found in a back alley next to a green wheelie bin.

"He had a carrier bag containing computer equipment, mobile phones, and sex toys."

Police found a 30 minute child abuse video of the most serious category A on one of the devices, the court heard.

"There was 75 category B images and 101 category C images," added Mr Hadfield.

"Some B and C images had been uploaded to the Tumblr sharing site.

"Messages from the defendant to other users spoke of having pictures to trade.

"There was around 40 user accounts, as one account was shut down the defendant would move on to another."

Lenaghan 41, of Balcary Court, Hartlepool, admitted three charges of making indecent photographs of children, two charges of distributing indecent images of children, and nine charges of breaching a sex offender notification requirement, all between September 2016 and January 2017.

The court heard he has a previous conviction for downloading indecent images.

Lenaghan breached the notification requirement from that sentence when he created the internet accounts without telling his monitoring officer.

Peter Sabiston, defending, said in mitigation: "Mr Lenaghan is ashamed of what he did, and remorseful for it.

"He accepts he has a sickness for which he would dearly like some help in treating.

"His difficulty is that he had one chance, but slipped back into his old ways.

"There is a new treatment course available to him now which was not available when he was convicted the first time."

Judge Sean Morris jailed Lenaghan for 22 months.

The judge told him: "This was serious offending, and it is not victimless offending.

"You were given one chance, but you do not get another.

"The breach of the sex offender notification requirements was determined and prolonged."

Lenaghan was made the subject of an order restricting his internet use for 10 years.