Man jailed for sharing child porn images

Cupar Sheriff Court.
Cupar Sheriff Court.
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A ST ANDREWS man found with almost 6000 indecent images of children on his laptop - some of them babies - has been jailed for 34 months.

Sean Butler (23) had ‘deviant fantasies’ that his solicitor wasn’t prepared to repeat, Cupar Sheriff Court has heard.

He was involved in a file-sharing network in which people viewed images that included the sadistic rape of children.

Butler, a computer games student who has since been dismissed from his course, had earlier admitted having the images in his possession and distributing them to others between July 15, 2010, and January 1, 2012.

The court had heard that police, acting on a tip-off, had found 5790 indecent images and 410 videos when they seached the home he shared with his parents and sister in Sandy Herd Court.

They ranged between level one on the Copine scale - involving nudity - to level five, involving sexual activity between adults and children as well as sadism and bondage.

The ages of the children ranged from a few months to 15 years, but defence agent Jacqueline Meisel said that his own preference was for boys aged 10 to 15, so he only looked at about 30 per cent of the images.

Passing sentence, Sheriff Charles Macnair told Butler: “In case anyone is in any doubt, these offences are not victimless crimes.

“The victims are the children who have been abused for those such as yourself who wish to view them.”

The sheriff also imposed a 10-year Sexual Offences Protection Order and banned Butler from having a computer capable of storing images unless he makes it available to the police for inspection on request, and from having software capable of permanently deleting material.

Butler will also be on the Sex Offenders’ Register and on a list of people banned from working with children or vulnerable adults.