August 2019

Carlisle chef, 32, had vile collection of child abuse images

A holiday park chef from Carlisle who amassed a vile collection of child abuse images over nearly a decade has avoided jail.

The city’s crown court heard that when police examined a mobile phone and two laptop computers owned by 32-year-old Marc Scott they found 459 images of children being abused, including one child who was just five years old.

Beccy McGregor, prosecuting, told the city’s crown court that police raided the defendant’s Sheffield Street home in Carlisle, seizing two laptops and his Samsung smartphone.

All were forensically examined.

“The images amounted to a collection,” said Miss McGregor.

There were 23 classed as category A – the most serious level of abuse; 22 category B pictures; and 383 category C images. There were also 12 category A moving images, one category B video, and eight Category C moving images, as well as an extreme pornographic movie.

Miss McGregor added: “The evidence indicated that this [material] had been accessed between October 6, 2009, and October 22, 2018 – a period of nine years. A further 1,000 or so files which were thought to contain similar illegal images had been deleted.

There was evidence Scott had systematically searched for the illegal images.

David Wales, for Scott, who now lives at Mayburgh Close, Eamont Bridge, near Penrith, said that the images of very young children which police found in the collection were part of a “bundle” of such material sent to the defendant, but he had not deliberately searched for those picture.

The same was true of the extreme pornography, he said.

The lawyer said: “He accepts entirely his responsibility and there had been a genuine expression of remorse in both his [police interview] and in his pre-sentence report.”

Mr Wales said Scott suffered Asperger’s syndrome.

Consequently, at the age of 32, he had only ever had one romantic relationship.

The lawyer added: “He is deeply, desperately lonely.

“He discovered pornography at an early age as an alternative to having relationships with people.”

A man of previous good character, who completed a degree in creative writing, he now felt profoundly ashamed, and was likely to lose his job as a chef at Center Parcs near Penrith.

Recorder Jeremy Lasker told the defendant: “Perhaps what you didn’t understand at the time was that all these children have mothers, and fathers; and all these children, whether you accept it or not, and it’s possible you do now accept it, were actually victims of real abuse.”

The judge imposed a three year community order so that the defendant can complete a Sex Offenders’ Treatment Programme. His name will be on the Sex Offenders’ Register for five years and he will be subject to a Sexual Harm Prevention Order.

He must also complete 20 rehabilitation activity days with the Probation Service.