March 10 2014 Latest news:
Emma Youle, News editor
Friday, January 10, 2014
A lonely secondary school teacher who amassed a cache of child pornography while searching for online companionship wept as he was jailed for 12 months.
Ian Clarke, 56, of Fortess Road, Kentish Town, hoarded hundreds of films and images of the sickening abuse of children as young as one.
He distributed the illegal content and collected movies of men romping with horses, Southwark Crown Court heard yesterday.
Clarke was tracked down by police when inquiries in another case revealed a man using the alias ‘londonguy06’ had been hoarding foul images on a laptop.
Clarke, a secondary school teacher working in London, immediately confessed to using this alias, the court heard.
Police also recovered three discs containing further disturbing images including adults engaging in sexual activity with animals.
Defence solicitor David Claydon told the court: “He is disgusted and finds abhorrent his actions.
“I would also point out that Mr Clarke is a man who has led a hitherto blameless life.
“You can see that Mr Clarke was in a very unfortunate place when these offences occurred.
“He was depressed and failing to deal with the death of a partner.
“His initial motivation was companionship.”
Judge Stephen Robbins told Clarke: “I bear in mind the contents of the pre-sentence report but I have to bear in mind the sentencing guidelines, the public revulsion to this type of offending, and the dire effect on those who are used to create this material - children in this case as young as one-to-two and two-to-three.”
Clarke sat motionless but started to cry as he was jailed for 12 months.
He will remain on the sex offenders register for 10 years.