Man turned to child porn after break-up

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A man said he began downloading child pornography after becoming depressed at splitting up with his fiance.

Timothy King, 33, was arrested following a tip-off to West Yorkshire Police from Dutch authorities that he had been accessing an illegal file-sharing site.

Officers seized computers and equipment from his home on Aketon Road, Castleford, and a total of 1,461 indecent images and movies were discovered.

Leeds Crown court heard that more than 700 images were at level four, the second most serious kind. Stephanie Hancock, prosecuting, said many of the images featured children as young as four years old. After his arrest, King, who works for an electrical engineering company, admitted downloading the illegal images for his own sexual gratification.

Freddie Apfel, mitigating, said King had been in a long-term relationship with a woman for five years. They were due to get married but had broken up before he began committing the offences.

Mr Apfel said: “Instead of going out and facing the world he turned inwards and stayed at home a lot, moping about what had happened to him.

“He began browsing on his computer and things appeared which he became curious about.

“In the end it spiralled out of control.”

He added: “He understands the harm that ensues to children and what they have to go through for these images to be produced. He wishes that there had been someone there to stop him. This has had a traumatic affect on his.”

Judge Geoffrey Marson said children would be better protected if King was given a community sentence rather than going to jail, so he could attend programmes designed to address his offending.

He said: “If I were to send you prison it would be for a period of 12 months or slightly less. You would get no help and you would come out in exactly the same state as you are, no doubt jobless and homeless.”

He was given a three-year community order, made to sign the sex offenders’ register for five years and told to pay £1,200 costs.

By Richard Ponter

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