November 2012

Ex-Labour man’s indecent photos haul revealed

A FORMER Labour campaigner caught with indecent photos of children as young as 12 was in contact with the suspected controller of an ‘extreme’ website for paedophiles.

Samuel Gamlin, 20, chatted online with Dominic Shaw and attempted to access Shaw’s vile site, a court heard.

It can also be revealed Gamlin was suspended from the party when the allegations emerged and he resigned from the post campaigning at Labour’s Newcastle call centre and from the party.

Gamlin’s discussion with Shaw was uncovered after police discovered two films and 34 explicit pictures on his laptop.

Prosecutors say Shaw is said to control a website that contained ‘extreme level four and five images’ of child abuse.

Photography student Gamlin was given a three-year community order with a three-year supervision requirement and told to attend a sex offenders’ group work programme.

He pleaded guilty to two counts of making indecent photographs of children on or before May 5, 2011.

Sentencing Gamlin, Judge David Higgins said: “This necessarily means you were participating in the most pernicious and damaging and indeed vile trade which does incalculable harm to children.

“Your behaviour, and I do not shrink from saying it, was utterly despicable and deeply antisocial.

“I hope that whatever drove you to these serious and deeply distasteful crimes is something that truly now you regret and that you have truly turned a corner.’

Prosecutor Stephen Hopper said police searched Gamlin’s home on May 5, 2011.

In the course of that search officers seized a MacBook laptop.

“They asked him whether he was willing to provide a password for that laptop and he did.

“He was asked if there were any indecent images on there and he said no.

“The MacBook was subsequently taken for analysis and found on it were two separate collections of indecent images of children.”

He said one set consisting of two movies of boys aged 12 to 13 years old were kept on a ‘secondary operating system’ accessible to the defendant.

A second set made up of 34 images, including ten at the second highest levels of severity, were also kept on the computer.

Mr Hopper added that officers had also uncovered chat logs and ‘traces’ of access to Shaw’s website.

He said: “That site is believed to be controlled by a man named Dominic Shaw.

“This defendant has been in direct contact with that man. There is evidence from the US of chat room contact between them.”

Emma Goodall, defending said her client was ‘extremely ashamed’ of his behaviour and ‘acutely aware of societies attitude’ towards his offending.

Gamlin pleaded guilty to the two offences last month.

He had been due to stand trial on a third allegation that he refused to divulge passwords to two encrypted hard drives, but the charge was left to lie on file following his pleas.

According to his LinkedIn profile, Gamlin was drafted in to work as a communications adviser to the Labour Party during the 2010 leadership election and worked there until March last year, calling voters while working in the call centre.

Gamlin, of The Leazes, Newcastle upon Tyne, was ordered to sign the sex offenders’ register for five years.

A Labour Party spokesman said: “Mr Gamlin was employed on a temporary contract for two short periods of time in our call centre in Newcastle.

“When these allegations came to light he was suspended from his membership of the Labour party. He is no longer a member of the Labour party.”