A BURTON man who was found with one of the largest collections of child pornography ever uncovered in the county has escaped jailed.
Stafford Crown Court heard how jobless Craig Jenkins downloaded more than 70,000 indecent pictures and movies of children from the internet and would stay up most of the night putting the illicit material on to his laptop.
However, despite the 44-year-old, of Tutbury Road, Burton, admitting 10 charges of making indecent images of children, one charge of distributing four images and one charge of possessing extreme pornography he still was not caged.
He was given a three year community order with a condition of undergoing a sex offender treatment programme, ordered to register as a sex offender for five years and banned from working with children indefinitely.
Neil Ahuja, prosecuting, said it was one of the largest collections of child porn found in the county.
After officers from the child protection unit raided his home and seized his computer they also found 30 images of adults performing vile acts of bestiality.
Judge Mark Eades told him: “In the privacy of your own house, probably in a private room with the curtains drawn, looking at pornography on your computer seems a harmless exercise. It is easy to persuade yourself what you are doing is victimless.
“The more people like you viewing this, the more children will be harmed. You must understand what you did isn’t some private matter, it impacts on many people, particularly children.”
Mr Ahuja said Jenkins was arrested on 30 June last year.
The images on his computer showed children, mainly girls, from toddlers up to the age of 18.
When questioned he said he had an interest in images of children, but not a physical attraction. He had been in internet chat rooms and exchanged images with others via email.
“His addiction developed about five or six years ago and he found it difficult to control - he would find himself staying up late in to the night downloading images.
Rashad Mohammed, defending, said Jenkins had been a viewer of regular adult porn, but found ‘pop-ups’ coming on to his screen.
“That’s what led him to view images of children.
“One thing led to another and before he knew it, he was downloading large quantities of images. He is willing to address his addiction.”