Wigan pensioner who hoarded vile child porn is spared jail

Police probe
Police probe

A Wigan pensioner who hoarded hundreds of vile child porn pictures has avoided jail.

But 67-year-old David Blackburn’s crimes were today branded “abhorrent” by the NSPCC which called for action from tech giants, government and law enforcers to do more to prevent sexual abuse’s online publication in the first place.

Bolton Crown Court heard Blackburn had 229 of the most serious photographs – ranked as category A - of children along with 71 category B and 54 category C images of children, as well as an extreme pornographic image featuring dogs.

Formerly of Church Lane, Lowton, and now of Warrington Road, Ince, Blackburn had pleaded guilty to four charges possessing indecent images when he appeared before Wigan justices earlier this year.

The three charges of making indecent photographs of a child – for downloading the images – related to a period between July 8, 2011 and October 26, 2016. The charge for possessing the image of an animal covered February 15 to October 26, 2016.

The court was told police searched Blackburn’s home after information came to light about an IP address there using peer-to-peer file-sharing software.

Yesterday Blackburn was given a 12-month prison term suspended for 24 months, a 10-year sexual harm prevention order and he was also ordered to sign on the Sex Offenders’ Register for 10 years.

An NSPCC spokesperson said: “Blackburn combed the internet for these sickening images, and has directly fuelled an industry which ruins the lives of children and young people. The production, consumption and circulation of child abuse material is an abhorrent crime. Behind every indecent image of a child or young person online a child has been abused in the real world.

“The NSPCC is calling on tech giants, government and law enforcement agencies to do more to prevent such content from being published in the first place and to remove this material as soon as possible when it is published on the internet.”