A 56-YEAR-old man who tried to blame his interest in child abuse images on paedophile pop star Gary Glitter was told by a judge his claims were “ludicrous”.
Following a raid at John Sumner’s home in 2012 police discovered that as well as downloading the images he had also been involved in distribution.
Sumner was given a 12 month prison sentence suspended for two years after pleading guilty to nine offences involving making indecent images and two of distribution.
Passing sentence at Liverpool Crown Court, Judge Andrew Hatton said that he took into account that Sumner had a 26 month wait since his arrest and sentence.
Graham Pickavance prosecuting said that police found a total of 248 images on Sumner’s computer in June 2012 most of which were in the lowest category.
Investigations showed that he also distributed two images, again in the lowest category, via Skype.
The court heard how Sumner, from The Pastures in Bold, claimed he developed an “inappropriate fascination” with such images after being intrigued by Glitter’s offences.
Judge Hatton told him: “It is clear you have an unhealthy interest in pre-pubescent children. Not only did you view images you also distributed to others with similar interests.
“Significant numbers of children suffer abuse to provide sexual gratification for people such as you. Distribution to other paedophiles, for that is what you are, compounds that abuse.
“The explanations you have advanced to the police and probation are frankly ludicrous.”
He ordered Sumner to attend the Northumbria sex offenders treatment programme and carry out 50 hours unpaid work.
Sumner must also sign the Sex Offenders register for seven years and a Sexual Offences Prevention Order restricting his internet use for ten years.