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  • Writer's pictureNikki Latham

Plymouth man jailed for sexual offences

A Plymouth man has been jailed for internet-based child sex offences and the sexual assault of a young girl.


Stephen Humphries, 58, from Pendeen Close in Plymouth, was sentenced to an eight year custodial term with a further two years to be served on extended licence at Plymouth Crown Court on Thursday 21 March.


He had pleading guilty to attempting to arrange/facilitate the commission of a child sex offence, making indecent photographs of children, distributing indecent photographs of children, taking indecent photographs, sexual assault of a child and possession of extreme pornography. He was also made subject of a sexual harm prevention order.


The court heard how Humphries had been engaging with someone online since 4 October 2023, who he believed would enable him to commit an online child sexual offence. However, what Humphries didn’t know was that individual was actually an investigating officer.


Humphries’ home was raided at 12.10pm on Saturday 14 October and inside the defendant was found with evidence open on his phone suggesting he was preparing to commit the act.


A large number of devices were seized from inside the property and later found to contain thousands of indecent images and videos of children spanning all three categories. There was also evidence that Humphries had shared some of the indecent images with others.


Humphries was also sentenced for sexual assaulting a girl aged under 16 in Plymouth.

Following the sentencing, officer in the case DC Sophie House said: “This was a complex police investigation which incorporated work from both the Devon and Cornwall Police Paedophile Online Investigation Team and the North East Regional Organised Crime Unit (NEROCU).
“We welcome today’s sentence and hope this conviction serves as a stark warning to those with an unlawfully blurred view of consent and the wider implications of the sexual abuse of children. This was a collaborative effort involving officers from the NEROCU, Devon and Cornwall Paedophile Online Investigation Team, the Force Support Group, and the Data Forensic Unit.
“I would also like to thank the victim in this case for her bravery and courage in coming forward. It’s not an easy thing to disclose something very personal to you, particularly when it relates to sexual offences. I hope this investigation highlights that the police take sexual allegations seriously, you will be believed, and we will support you as much as we can.
“We will never stop investigating online offences in order to safeguard children and protect the public from those who would seek to hurt children. By possessing child sexual abuse material, even if you are not the one committing the abuse, you are nevertheless contributing to the sexual exploitation of a child somewhere in the world. For those tempted to engage in this type of behaviour, our message is simple: we are watching you, you will be caught, and you can expect a knock at the door from us.”
Speaking after the sentencing, NEROCU Detective Sergeant Barrow, said: “This is a great example of police partners working together across the country to protect children from dangerous predators.
“We will continue to work with our partners to tackle online child abuse and sexual exploitation and would urge anyone who has been a victim of this type of offending, or has concerns about someone’s behaviour, to come forward and talk to police.”


This news story has been produced by Chesil Radio's News Team, for more information please visit: https://www.chesilradio.com



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