January 2019

Woman offered sex to who she believed was a 13-year-old boy for £10

A woman who offered sex to a fictitious 13-year-old boy for £10 has avoided a prison sentence.

Leanne Curnoe, 22, of Alma Place in Redruth, was caught when one of her ‘friends’ made a fake Facebook profile and began to message her from it.

Curnoe appeared at Truro Crown Court for sentencing on Friday (February 1) after previously pleading guilty to a charge of attempting to meet a child following sexual grooming in September 2017.

Prosecuting barrister Philip Lee said: “The witness in this case knew the defendant and there were rumours she’d been having sex with boys for money. When asked about this she effectively admitted it.

“The witness set up a fake Facebook account in the name Richard Jones and messaged Miss Curnoe asking for sex with the words ‘what do I get for £100’ to which the defendant replied ‘everything’.

“The messages were clear and it was apparent sex was being offered. The witness observed the defendant waiting outside the night shelter in Basset Street in Camborne where they’d agreed to meet but didn’t tell the police.

“She was interviewed in February but denied all knowledge. When she was showed the messages she admitted she did so for money and heroin.”

Mr Lee concluded by saying that the messages made clear how old the fictional boy was and indicated that penetrative sex was intended.

Sentencing Curnoe, Judge Simon Carr said the circumstances are “as sad as they are troubling”.

He said: “I’ve read a very full psychiatric report that shows you had a very difficult childhood. You were forced to leave home far too young and spent part of your adult life street homeless.

“To cope with the situation you turned to heroin and you were forced to find other ways of raising money. To your credit, at the age of 22, with an entrenched heroin habit, you have only two previous convictions.

“The route you took was to sell sex for money and drugs. It’s clear you had reached your lowest ebb. The rumour – and I repeat unfounded rumour – in the homeless community was that you sold sex to underage boys.

“One of your so-called friends decided to attempt to entrap you and you indicated that for £10 you would have sex with him in desperation for money for the drugs you needed. However there was no young boy. The profile was entirely fictitious.

“I give you credit for your early guilty plea and you are now on an established methadone script and seeking help from Addaction voluntarily.”

Curnoe was given an 18-month prison sentence suspended for two years and a 25-day rehabilitation activity requirement to help with her homelessness and addiction issues.

November 2018

A 22-year-old woman has admitted attempting to meet an underage boy after sexual grooming.

Leanne Curnoe, of Alma Place Redruth, appeared at Truro Crown Courton Friday (November 30) accompanied by a support worker.

She pleaded guilty to being a person aged over 18 who had attempted to meet the boy, knowing he was aged under 16, with intent to commit a sexual offence.

The offence against the child, who cannot be named because of his age, dates back to last year.

Robin Smith, representing Curnoe, said she had undergone a psychiatric report which had concluded she was fit to enter a plea.

He said Curnoe was a woman who faced considerable difficulties in her life and suggested the court would benefit from a pre-sentence report.

Judge James Townsend agreed and said it was essential the court had all the details of Curnoe’s background before passing sentence.

The case was adjourned for Curnoe to be interviewed by the Probation Service and she will appear for sentence on January 11.

Curnoe was released on unconditional bail.