December 2019

Paedophile who had Ilkley photographic studio is jailed after police found hundreds of indecent pictures at his home

A PERSISTENT paedophile who had a photographic studio in Ilkley has been jailed again.

Robin Doherty was found to be storing pictures of men having sex with children as young as four, Bradford Crown Court heard today.

Doherty, 53, was imprisoned for two years and eight months after the police broke into his then address in Crosley Wood Road, Bingley, on May 8 last year and seized hundreds of indecent images.

Prosecutor Clare Walsh said he had pleaded guilty to three offences of making indecent photographs and a count of possessing a prohibited image of a child.

Mrs Walsh said that police acting on information forced their way into Doherty’s home and took away computers and a memory stick. When he turned up, the officers confiscated his phone and that too contained images of child abuse.

In all, there were 69 Category A images, 51 at Category B and 1,178 at Category C.

The hoard included still and moving images of children aged between four and 16.

Doherty, of Parkwood Court, Keighley, was in breach of a Sexual Offences Prevention Order imposed at Leeds Crown Court when he was jailed for five years in March 2010 for 18 offences of making, possessing and distributing indecent images.

At that time, he had a photographic studio in Brook Street, Ilkley, and was paid to take indecent pictures of teenage girls.

He negotiated with children as young as 13 to have sex with him on camera for cash.

A 16-year-old girl went to Doherty’s studio where she started with fashion shots and ended with naked shots. She was paid £300.

At a second session, Doherty photographed the girl in indecent poses.

After this session, he contacted the teenager’s sister, who was 14 at the time, and her friend, who was 13.

Doherty offered £1,000 to each girl to have sex with him, and possibly another man, and for the session to be recorded.

The court heard that one of the girls sent him indecent pictures of herself as she considered the offer.

The session never went ahead and Doherty was caught when one of the girls’ relatives intercepted one of his messages.

Police found thousands of child abuse images on Doherty’s computer that had been downloaded.

Mrs Walsh said that Doherty masked his IP address to avoid being detected in his latest offending.

When he knew he had been caught, he told the police: “How did you find out? I will be going to prison again.”

Doherty’s solicitor advocate, John Bottomley, said his client had been diagnosed with autism by a psychiatrist.

Mr Bottomley said that attending a three-year sex offender treatment programme run by the probation service would better serve the community than locking Doherty up again.

But Judge Jonathan Rose disagreed.

“Any right-thinking person would be disgusted and horrified by your offending: this court is disgusted and horrified,” he said.

During Doherty’s lengthy jail sentence, he had received treatment for his paedophilia but he had continued to offend.

He was storing pictures of men having sex with children as young as four.

Doherty had later complained about the course he received behind bars.

“You didn’t like the Sex Offender Treatment Programme in prison. You thought it was horrible,” Judge Rose told him.

Doherty should have heeded the course and made the decision to stop offending. Instead, he had used various different devices to file share hundreds of indecent images of children, hiding his IP address.

Judge Rose made a Sexual Harm Prevention Order without limit of time and Doherty must sign on the sex offender register indefinitely.

March 2010

Man took pictures of young girls and tried to set up filmed sex session at Ilkley studio


A photographer who lured teenage girls to his Ilkley studio and tried to convince them to have sex with him on camera has been jailed for five years.

Robin Doherty, 43, lured three teenagers, aged 16, 14 and 13, to his Brook Street studio in Ilkley with the promise of cash, cigarettes and alcohol if they posed naked, a court heard.

He was finally caught after a relative of the vulnerable 13-year-old, who had been coerced into sending nude shots of herself, discovered one of his explicit messages on her phone.

Leeds Crown Court heard on Friday that Doherty, from Bradford, had been a photographer for five years prior to his involvement with the teens – snapping glamour models and even having sex on camera with one for cash. But after his business went bankrupt he became desperate and jumped at the chance to photograph an aspiring 16-year-old model, who cannot be named for legal reasons, after she sent a picture to him following a visit to the website Net-Model.

Prosecuting, Philip Adams, told the court that Doherty paid the girl up to £350 a session for nude and sexually explicit pictures of her in his studio in Ilkley.

Mr Adams told the court that Doherty was introduced to the 16-year-old’s younger sister, who was 14, and her friend who was 13 at the time after she brought them along to a shoot. He then began to communicate with the 13-year-old girl, who he claimed he believed was 15, via text and MSN before making an offer of £1,000 to each of the three girls to have sex with him and another man on camera.

The 13-year-old agreed to the lewd shoot but it was cancelled after the 16-year-old girl declined the offer and asked Doherty to keep her younger sister out of the equation.

Mr Adams said: “The texting clearly indicates that the 13-year-old asked the defendant what he would pay for topless shots and he said £100 and invited her to send him some photos of herself.

“It is clear from the messages that the defendant was trying to organise a photo shoot with the 13-year-old and the 16-year-old and that his intention was to have sex with the girls. He also said that there would be free cigarettes and alcohol.”

Doherty was arrested in February 2008 after a relative of the 13-year-old discovered one of his text messages but it took 16 months for him to be charged.

When police raided his home they found a staggering 25,000 indecent images on his computer, with eight classed as ‘level five’ images official deemed the most serious class of indecent image 34 at level four. He admitted to police to attempting to convince the girls to have sex on camera and offering them money to do so.

Sickening images taken by Doherty were found on the computer of his ‘money man’, Andrew Thorpe, who paid him a total of £8,000 to take the images and send them to him.

Thorpe was tried separately and received a non-custodial sentence. In mitigation for Doherty, Robin Frieze said: “This is not a case where the defendant was promulgating images of these girls in a widespread way. He was not advertising them on the internet and distributing the images widely. There was one other person involved.”

Sentencing Doherty, the Recorder of Leeds Judge Peter Collier QC said: “The court regularly deals with people who take photos for their own satisfaction. We rarely deal with the people who take the photos and arrange them and deal directly in this evil trade. “You were prepared to offer substantial sums of money. Not only did you offer money but you offered the classic attraction to children of cigarettes and alcohol if they were to take part in these sessions.

“It went further than just taking photos because you admitted to police it would have been your intention to have sex with them and have photographs taken of that activity.”

Doherty was sentenced to five years for two counts of taking indecent photos of children, one of distribution, one of arranging to have sexual intercourse with a child, 12 of making indecent photos and one of possession.