Welwyn Garden City man jailed for sexual abuse of a child
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A 41 year old man from Welwyn Garden City was jailed yesterday (Tuesday 29 August) after pleading guilty to committing sexual offences against a young girl, over a 10 year period.
The man, who cannot be named due to a court order, was arrested by Hertfordshire officers in November 2022, after information was passed to the force’s Child Online Safety Team, from the National Crime Agency, regarding indecent images being uploaded to an online platform which was linked to his home address.
During his first police interview the man claimed the images had been shared by mistake, but all of his electronic devices were seized and examined.
Officers found evidence on his phone of him sexually abusing a young girl who was later identified and who provided a statement confirming she had been a victim of his sexual abuse for many years.
The man was subsequently charged with 15 offences and remanded to prison:
Three offences of rape of a child
Four offences of inciting a child to engage in sexual activity
Six offences of sexual assault
Causing a child to watch a sexual act
Possession of indecent images
He appeared at St Albans Crown Court on 28 March, where he pleaded guilty to all offences.
He then returned for sentencing yesterday (Tuesday 29 August) and was given 13 years and one month. Judge Sandeep Kainth passed an extended sentence of a further year, making a total sentence of 14 years one month. The man must register as a sex offender for life and abide by the terms of a sexual harm prevention order.
Detective Sergeant Jim Miller from the Child Online Safeguarding Team said: “We are committed to identifying and proactively targeting those in Hertfordshire who pose a threat to children. The dedication and commitment shown by my officers in this investigation has resulted in another child being protected and a perpetrator being handed a significant sentence.
“The net is really tightening on those who commit these sickening crimes. We work with many different agencies to weed out those who prey on children, and we will continue to bring them to justice.”