Student jailed for storing and sharing depraved child pornography
A UNIVERSITY student found with nearly 1,500 indecent images of children has been jailed for 20 months.
A judge told 21-year-old Connor Jones that the abuse of young people was the "theft of their childhood".
Jones was caught with both stills and movies of the most depraved kind showing sexual assaults on children – and he shared some of the worst with a stranger over the internet, Plymouth Crown Court heard.
Judge Paul Darlow said: "Anyone who has ever had to view images of this type will always be struck with the abject misery or the dead-eyed expression against whom these acts have been perpetrated.
"These acts represent the theft of their childhood and the loss of innocence.
"They store up psychological damage with which they will have to live with for the rest of their lives."
He added that the victims would also have to live with the knowledge that images of themselves were circulating on the internet and giving others sexual satisfaction.
Jones, of George Lane in Lewisham but previously living in Prince Rock, admitted five offences of making and possessing indecent images of children on various dates from 2008 until 2012.
He also admitted one count of distributing indecent images.
Prosecutor Alistair Verheijen said police executed a search warrant in Cotehele Avenue, Prince Rock, on January 11 last year.
He added Jones was not at home but his computer tower was seized.
Mr Verheijen said officers also raided the address in London where Jones is at university.
The court heard that they seized a laptop computer and two memory sticks.
Mr Verheijen said that in total police found 1,472 deleted and live still and movie images of Levels 1 to 5. Level 5 is the most depraved.
About half the images were at the lowest two levels, but Jones had 220 still images and 70 movies at Level 4 and 20 stills and three movies at Level 5.
Mr Verheijen said experts found traces on one of the computers of a conversation between Jones and another paedophile.
He added Jones had sent the stranger three Level 4 images and received several images in return.
Jason Beal, for Jones, said he realised the seriousness of his crimes and said he had distributed only a small number of images over a short period and not for financial gain.
Handing up a character reference, he added: "This is a significant part, but only one part of his character."
He added he had no previous convictions and had the support of his family.
Judge Darlow said Jones had started looking at indecent images aged only 16 out of "misjudged curiosity".
But he then began storing and distributing the pictures.
Judge Darlow said: "There can be no alternative to an immediate period of custody."