December 2019

Alexander Coates was on a suspended jail term for similar offences but continued to send inappropriate messages to who he thought were children

The Arnos Vale man was handed a suspended jail term for online sex talk with someone he thought was a girl aged 14.

But a few months later he repeated his antics with three “girls” – and, like the first time, they were actually paedophile hunters.

Alexander Coates, 21, of Upper Street, pleaded guilty to attempting to incite a girl aged under 16 to engage in sexual behaviour.

He also pleaded guilty to attempted breach of a Sexual Harm Prevention Order. (SHPO)

Judge Martin Picton jailed him for 28 months, which included activation of some of the previously suspended term.

He told Coates: “I’m very sorry to see you back.

“I had hoped with the package in May that it would give you an opportunity to address your problems in life that led to your offending.

“You’ve still got a lot of progress to make’’

Coates was told to register as a sex offender for ten years and abide by a SHPO for ten years.

Rupert Russell, prosecuting, told Bristol Crown Court Coates was banned from communicating with children aged under-16 by a SHPO in May.

But in November Coates messaged “Chloe aged 13” and was sexually suggestive.

He did the same with “Ava aged 13” and “Hayley aged 14”.

The court heard all three were actually adult investigators, who pooled their information with paedophile hunter groups Angels of Innocence and Scorpian Hunters.

February 2019

Bristol man who tried to groom girl for sex got a big surprise

A shock was in store for an Arnos Vale man groomed “Chloe, aged 14” for sex online.

Alexander Coates was actually sending sexually suggestive messages to a paedophile hunter.

The 20-year-old, of Upper Street, pleaded guilty to attempting to incite a child aged under-16 to engage in sexual activity between December 14 and 24 last year.

He also admitted attempting to meet a child following sexual grooming.

Coates entered guilty pleas to the charges on February, 27 and was due to be sentenced at Bristol Crown Court.

But Richard Posner, prosecuting, told the court: “The officer-in-charge of the case has attended.

“He informs me that having looked at a mobile phone there may be more material he needs to appreciate.”

Mr Posner said, however, that no further charges were likely to follow in the case.

Judge James Townsend adjourned the case for sentence on March 8.

He bailed Coates on condition he does not contact youngsters aged under 16 via social media and co-operates with a report on him.

Coates was also told to register as sex offender and informed he would be barred from working with children and vulnerable adults.