Wigan sex offender jailed after claiming he was a victim of computer hacking

A Wigan man has been jailed for making indecent images of children and attempting to incite a child to engage in sexual activity.

Friday, 3rd May 2019, 1:35 pm
Updated Friday, 3rd May 2019, 1:41 pm
Neil Walsh
Neil Walsh

Neil Walsh, 41, of Trevore Drive, Standish, has been sentenced at Manchester Crown Court, Crown Square to 27 months in prison.

He was found guilty of six counts of making indecent images of children and one count of attempting to incite a child aged under 16 to engage in sexual activity.

He will also have to sign the sex offenders register for 10 years and will be subject to a sexual harm prevention order.

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During November 2016, as part of an ongoing investigation into child sex offences, police executed a warrant at Walsh’s address in Standish. Officers seized his phone and computer and found a number of indecent images and videos of children.

He was subsequently arrested, however throughout police interview denied the offences, claiming that he didn’t know how any of the images came to be on his devices and proposed that he was a victim of hacking.

The court heard how a team of digital forensic specialists examined Walsh’s devices and found no evidence of hacking.

While carrying out these examinations, the team also uncovered several conversations between Walsh and a 14-year-old girl.

In these conversations, Walsh impersonated a teenage girl to gain the victim’s trust and incite her to engage in sexual activity.

PC Lee Davies, of GMP’s Organised Crime Unit in Wigan, said: “I hope that today’s sentence makes it crystal clear to the public how seriously Greater Manchester Police take crimes of this nature and that we will do everything in our power to bring offenders like Walsh to justice.

“The fact he took on a new identity in order to manipulate his young victim shows that his perverted actions truly had no bounds.

“In denying the offences throughout trial, Walsh clearly could not face up to his crimes and arrogantly thought he would get away with them.

“Thankfully - despite him pleading not guilty- a jury saw through his lies.”