December 2012

Paedophile joined Derby gym where children were members


A PAEDOPHILE has been convicted of breaching the terms of his sexual offences prevention order by joining a child-friendly gym.

Michael Park failed to tell police that he had joined LA Fitness gym, in Derby, last November.

The conditions of his order, which was handed to him in 2009 following a conviction for having indecent images of children, state that he is not permitted to enter designated areas where there are under-16s.

Sarah Allen, prosecuting, told Derby Crown Court that Park, 30, had visited the gym on 40 separate occasions.

She said: “This happened at various times of the day.

“The gym became aware that the defendant was a registered sex offender.

“They cancelled his membership and contacted the police.

“The defendant was interviewed and he claimed not to know that people under the age of 18 were allowed to enter the gym.”

Justin Ablott, for Park, said that his client mainly used the facilities at the gym early in the morning when children were not permitted to use the gym.

He said: “This is a young man who has a number of issues.

“He does acknowledge breaking the terms of his order but there is no evidence of any contact with young people.”

Mr Ablott said his client was “very, very afraid” of prison and added that “he didn’t enjoy the experience last time”.

Sentencing him, Judge Hilary Watson told Park he must seek clarification with his probation officer in the future.

She said: “This is a very serious breach of trust that goes to the heart of the order. On 40 occasions, you went into a facility where there are young children.

“It is right there is no suggestion you put yourself in any close proximity of these young people, but the probation officer took a very dim view of what you had done.”

Park, formerly of Spondon, but now of Belvoir Way, Alfreton, was given a 30-month supervision order, fined £75 and ordered to pay £150 costs.

Park, a former window cleaner, was sentenced to 16 months in prison at Derby Crown Court in October 2009 and was put on the sexual offenders’ register for at least 10 years.

He was caught and tracked down by police after they discovered he was possessing and making images of young boys, some as young as six. At the time, he admitted 13 charges of making indecent images, five charges of acquiring such images and two of taking them.

But he denied ever having groomed children or having sexual activities with them.

At the time of his original case, the court heard how Park had told police that he enjoyed looking at young boys having sex because they were “feminine in their appearance”.

December 2009

Window cleaner who had indecent images sent to prison

A 27-YEAR-OLD man who used a concealed camera to record a teenage boy using the toilet has been jailed.

Michael Park was tracked down by police when he was discovered using an internet forum for people with an interest in young boys.

Park, of Spondon, had offered to share images of two youths.

When officers searched his home they found 2,542 indecent images and movies of children on hislaptop, phone and CDs – two of which he had recorded himself.

One was of a teenage boy rubbing his foot against Park and the other of a youngster using the toilet.

Park, a window cleaner, was sentenced to 16 months in prison at Derby Crown Court yesterday. He has been banned from working with children and has to go on the sexual offenders’ register for 10 years.

The court heard how 1,335 of the images were category one, 735 were category four and 75 category five – the most graphic level.

Avik Mukherjee, prosecuting, said that when Park was interviewed by police, he denied having any sexual activity with young boys or having groomed them. He said that the images were all just a fantasy. Mr Mukherjee said: “He said he enjoyed watching images of young boys having sex.”

Park told police that he was interested in 12-to-14-year-old boys because they were feminine in their appearance.

Mr Mukherjee said the vast majority of images were of boys in this age group. However, there were some of boys as young as six. Just over 50% of the images were unallocated, meaning they had been deleted.

Park admitted 13 charges of making indecent images, five of possessing the images and two of taking them.

Clive Stockwell, in mitigation, said that Park, of Edmund Road, had already suffered his worst punishment.

Mr Stockwell said: “From his point of view the most extreme punishment has already happened. His family have been subjected to extreme trauma because of his wrongdoing. And the impact of that is all too real to the defendant.”

Pc Mick Draycott, of Derbyshire police’s child exploitation investigation unit, said: “I think the sentence will be a short, sharp shock for him. The most important thing is that we have him on the register and have control of him. Also it sends out a message that we are aware of these things and do act.”