‘Every parent’s worst nightmare’: Wakefield pervert Alan Higgins tricked parents, probabtion service and prison authorities

Alan Higgins.
Alan Higgins.

Depraved Alan Higgins weaved a web of ‘deceit and manipulation’ in order to fulfill his perverted sexual desires.

Leeds Cornw Court heard the twisted details of how the 61-year-old hid his offending from authorities to groom his 13-year-old victim.

Higgins set up fake Facebook accounts, including one in the name of his former prisoner governor where he had been held at MHP North Sea Camp, in Lincolnshire.

READ MORE: ‘Determined’ paedophile, 61, sent 13-year-old girl a Valentine’s card from prison

At the time of his arrest, in February 2017, Higgins was living in Wakefield after being released on licence from an indeterminate prison sentence, imposed in 2008, for grooming and sex offences against another schoolgirl.

The offences against his latest victim came to light when police went to his flat after receiving information that child pornography had been accessed from the address.

As part of his licence conditions he was only allowed to possess one mobile phone.

Prosecutor Michael Morley said indecent images were found on two mobile phones in Higgins’ possession along with a ‘stack of love letters’ from the 13-year-old girl.

Higgins was interviewed about the letters, which contained the girl’s name, but refused to answer questions.

She was traced by police officers after the blue book was found hidden in the flat which contained names, addresses and sim cards.

The girl initially denied any knowledge of Higgins, claiming she had been seeing a boy of her own age.

She eventually revealed details of Higgins’ abuse after specialist officers gained her confidence.

Higgins and the girl first made contact when he set up a Facebook account in the name of ‘Paul Smith’.

Higgins did not tell the girl his real age and asked her if she was a virgin and had a boyfriend.

He first met her in May 2016 and drove her to a Travelodge in Skegness where they had sex.

Two weeks later Higgins bought her a Pandora ring before taking her to a motel in Mirfield for sex.

Other offences took place at premises in Lincolnshire, Blackpool and Peterborough.

On occasions the girl would be given wine to drink

Higgins would often pick the girl up from near her school before driving her away.

On one occasion the girl’s mum contacted her while she was with Higgins.

The youngster told her mum she would be staying with a friend but the lie was discovered.

During a tearful conversation with her parent the girl claimed she was staying at the home of a boy of her own age after his parents had agreed to it.

Higgins then drove the girl home and pretended to be the father of her ‘boyfriend’.

He told the girl’s mother that she had assured him that she had permission to stay at his family home.

The prosecutor said: “He told off (the girl) in front of her family for lying and told her that she had to respect her mother.”

Higgins later told police that he thought “the game was up” after that incident but he later received a text from the girl’s mother saying police would not be contacted.

The defendant also told officers that he described his offending as “hiding in plain sight” as people would think he was the father or grandfather of the girl.

Higgins and the girl had also discussed getting married, going on honeymoon to Tenerife and having children.

He managed to contact the girl in January this year while he was held in custody by sending a card from prison to the home of her grandparents.

The grandparents were confused after receiving the card which was addressed to ‘Bob and Rose’.

They were further confused by the content of the message which referred to Tenerife, Monarch Airlines and the singer Paloma Faith.

Police were contacted again when it became clear that Higgins must have sent the card as he was writing about details that were personal to the girl.

Higgins was interviewed in jail and also confessed to posting a Valetine’s card to the girl.

The girl’s father managed to intercept the card before it could reached her.