A 57-year-old man from Crewe who drove to Bradford with the intention of meeting a 14-year-old girl for sex as he awaited sentencing for other child sex offences has been jailed.
Ian Robinson, formally of Stanier Close, Crewe, was sentenced to five years and four months in prison on Wednesday 18 July.
The court heard that Robinson attempted to incite who he believed to be a 15-year-old girl in sexual activity in December 2016 and sent her indecent videos of himself – but he was actually communicating with a fellow paedophile via a mobile phone messaging app.
The other paedophile – a 54-year-old man from Essex – was being investigated by Surrey Constabulary.
When officers arrested him at his Chelmsford home on April 4 2017 on suspicion of a number of child sex offences his online contact with Robinson was brought to the attention of Cheshire Police.
Detectives executed a search warrant at Robinson’s home on 18 May 2017 and a number of devices able to connect to the internet – including his mobile phone – were seized and forensically examined.
Indecent images of children were found on his phone, which also contained sexual communication with a 15-year-old girl that took place via a messaging app in May 2017.
Robinson was charged with three counts of attempting to cause or incite a girl aged 13 to 15 in sexual activity, two counts of making an indecent photograph/pseudo-photograph of a child, one count of engaging in sexual communication with a child and one count of attempting to cause a child aged 13 to 15 to watch or look at an image of sexual activity.
He pleaded guilty to all the charges at Crewe Magistrates’ Court on 24 January 2018 and was set to be sentenced at Chester Crown Court on 21 February 2018.
However two weeks before his court appearance Robinson drove to Bradford after arranging to meet a 14-year-old girl for sex. He had been grooming her via an internet chatroom and a messaging app.
While in Bradford Robinson was arrested by West Yorkshire Police, who found a bottle of lubrication and a blanket in his car.
He was subsequently charged with meeting a child following sexual grooming and attempting to cause or incite a girl aged 13 to 15 in sexual activity.
Robinson pleaded not guilty to those charges on Friday 16 March 2018 but this week, on Wednesday 18 July, a jury at Bradford Crown Court convicted him of the offences.
Following the guilty verdict he was sentenced for all nine offences he committed.
On top of the custodial sentence Robinson was given a lifelong sexual harm prevention order and was made to forfeit all the devices he used to try to communicate with children.
In sentencing Robinson, His Right Honourable Judge Dixon told him: “You are a dangerous man who has been happily roaming around the internet looking for young girls.
“[When giving your evidence] you have attempted to backtrack, lie, blame alcohol and mislead the court. You are a deceptive man.
“You have a genuine paedophilic interest and are a very real risk of sexual harm to children.”
Detective Constable Andy Kent, of the Paedophile and Cyber Investigation Team at Cheshire Police, said: “We are committed to pursuing and bringing to justice those who view indecent images online and prey on vulnerable children using social media and messaging apps.
“Robinson is clearly a dangerous and predatory individual who was so intent on meeting young girls for sexual activity that, despite being charged with seven child sex offences and expecting a custodial sentence, he still continued his online search for a vulnerable young girl whom he could exploit.
“When Robinson thought he had found such a girl – who he believed to be just 14 years old – he showered her with compliments over social media and drove 78 miles to meet her for sex.
“Thankfully he has been given a substantial prison sentence and can no longer pose a threat to young girls.”