Man denies sex with teen girls

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A WIGAN man had sex with two under-age girls he met after grooming them via the internet, a court heard.

Paul Wallace was found to have video clips of the partially-clad girls, aged 13 and 14, on his mobile phone along with dozens of text messages with them.

The 58-year-old told one of them that he was a wealthy 30-year-old and drove an Aston Martin but turned out to be balding and bespectacled and turned up in a white van with an inflatable mattress in the back.

His sordid activities came to light after he began communicating via an internet chat room with an undercover police officer who was posing as a teenage girl and Wallace attempted to engage in sexual activity using a webcam, claimed Mark Ainsworth, prosecuting.

Wallace, of Whitehall Avenue, Appley Bridge, is on trial denying a total of 16 charges.

These include two offences of meeting a child following sexual grooming, six of sexual activity with one girl when she was aged 13 and 14 and three of making indecent photographs of her.

The other charges involve raping the other girl the day before her 13th birthday, two of taking indecent photographs of her, one of possessing four photographs and one video clip of her and the final offence involves attempting to engage in sexual activitiy in the presence of a child.

Mr Ainsworth told a Liverpool Crown Court that Wallace claimed he believed they were aged 16.

He denied having sex with the younger girl although admitted doing so with the other girl.

The girls were tracked down after his mobile phone and computers were seized following his on-line conversations with the under-cover police officer.

One lived in Cannock in Staffordshire before moving to Manchester and the other girl lived in Luton.

He told the girl from Cannock, now aged 15, that he drove an Aston Martin.

“He plainly gained her trust which culminated in meeting her for the purpose of sexual abuse,” claimed Mr Ainsworth.

He travelled to Cannock to meet her and although nothing sexual took place on that occasion, the next time he drove down he picked her up from school and they had sex in his van on an inflatable mattress before he dropped her off outside her home.

Over the months that followed she would see him several times each month, although sometimes just to talk and other times they had sex in various locations.

He sometimes used his mobile phone to record what was going on, alleged Mr Ainsworth.

Video clips from his phone was played to the jury of five women and seven men and videod police interviews with the girls will be shown to them as the trial progresses.

When interviewed about the girl from Cannock he gave a prepared statement admitting having sex with her but said he believed she was 16 and said she had claimed to be 16.

Mr Ainsworth told the jury that text messages between the pair, however, clearly indicated that he knew she was under 16 including him texting, “as soon as you are 16 I am getting you a flat here.”

In another conversation about their 18-month-long relationship she confirmed that she had been 13 when they met.

Mr Ainsworth said that the other girl was 12 when Wallace met her and after grooming her he had sex with her the day before her 13th birthday in Luton.

He picked her up from school, while she was in her school uniform, and they had sex in the back of his van.

Video clips of her were also found by police on his phone, though not as many and not as explicit as the other girl.

Interviewed about her he claimed he believed she was 16 but denied having penetrative sex with her and said he had not done so with anyone for two years because of a medical problem.

Mr Ainsworth read extracts from text messages in which Wallace referred to having sex with her.

Proceeding