Two registered sex offenders from Liverpool have been sentenced to imprisonment after the innovative electronic monitoring service eSafe Global alerted Merseyside Police to their vile and depraved activities.
Connor Jackson, 27, from Seel Street, Liverpool city centre, was sentenced at Liverpool Crown Court on Friday, 14 July, to two years in prison for possessing indecent images of children and breaching a sexual harm prevention order.
Meanwhile, his co-accused, Thomas Edward Stanley, 33, from Phoenix Brow, St Helens, was sentenced on 1 June 2023 to 32 months imprisonment for similar offences.
This included the distribution of indecent photographs of children, which constituted a breach of Stanley’s Sexual Harm Prevention Order.
The arrests were made on 24 March following an operation by the Merseyside Police Sex Offender Unit.
Both men’s homes were searched, revealing evidence of their vile and depraved activities.
The case against Jackson was prompted when eSafe Global detected that he had accessed a suspicious image on his device.
This is a milestone for Merseyside Police, marking their first successful use of eSafe Global to identify offending.
Investing in this software has significantly enhanced the Sex Offender Unit’s capacity to monitor registered sex offenders and their online activity.
Upon detecting any suspicious activity, the software triggers an alert which allows for further police enquiries.
The data gathered during the investigation revealed a conversation in which a man sent Jackson a video featuring an indecent video of a boy.
Subsequent texts implied an intent to supply a USB stick containing more explicit material.
This exchange violated a condition of Stanley’s Sexual Harm Prevention Order prohibiting him from associating with other registered sex offenders.
Specialist digital media search dogs trained to sniff out any item capable of electronic storage assisted in the police operation.
As a result, numerous devices were discovered at Stanley’s home, including the aforementioned USB stick containing shocking and utterly abhorrent Category A images and Category B and C images.
There are approximately 65,000 registered sex offenders in England and Wales, with about 20,000 currently serving a prison sentence.
The average sentence for a sex offence in England and Wales is five years, though this can vary depending on the severity of the crime.
Upon release, paedophiles like Jackson and Stanley are subject to numerous restrictions.
These include notification requirements, travel restrictions, and electronic tagging.
Following sentencing, Detective Inspector Steven O’Neill said:
“This should send a very clear message to the public that we will do everything in our power and use all tools at our disposal to target offenders and bring them to justice.
“Merseyside Police has invested in digital monitoring risk management software to reduce the risk posed by sex offenders living in the community, but also to ensure that robust proactive arrests can be made swiftly should any illegal activity be identified.
“This software enables police offender managers, who work with sex offenders, to ensure they are complying with sexual harm prevention orders. When instances of further offending are discovered, they are dealt with robustly, as this case shows.”
Merseyside Police’s sex offender unit regularly conducts up to five hundred visits each month to ensure that sex offenders living in the community are closely monitored.
Each Registered Sex offender has an individual Police Offender Manager who is responsible for identifying any suspicious activity or signs of reoffending during their visits.
Offender managers work closely with partners in probation and housing to ensure that the public is protected and the risk of further offending is minimised.
Det Insp O’Neill added: “Sex offending has such a huge and terrible impact on victims, and we are determined to continue looking to innovative new ways of identifying repeat offenders at the earliest possible opportunity, to prevent young people coming to further harm from abuse and exploitation.”
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