Highgate home of paedophile antiques dealer may be seized over £13k council tax debt

A legal battle to recoup £13,000 of unpaid council tax could see the Highgate home of a convicted paedophile seized.

People living in Priory Gardens are worried about the return of antiques dealer Gerald Ingram to their street.

The 64-year-old was jailed in September for arranging to sexually abuse two young girls – and residents fear he may pose a risk to children if he returns to his home when released from prison.

The Ham&High can reveal that bailiffs visited the house in Priory Gardens last week in a bid to seize assets against a £13,000 council tax debt.

If the full amount cannot be recovered by seizing property or savings, Haringey Council could apply for an order against the house, forcing it to be sold.

One neighbour, who has lived in Priory Gardens for 40 years and asked not to be named, said: “A bailiff knocked on his door last week. He told me that Ingram owes £13,000 in council tax.

“Ingram boasted about it, he owes hundreds of parking tickets, he doesn’t bother paying parking tickets or council tax, he just doesn’t care. Then he does something as dreadful as that.

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“Everyone was thrilled that he was sent away and people are very fed up that he might be coming back. He’s a horrible person. The house is falling apart and derelict.

“All the young mothers and fathers don’t want a man like that back. I’d like to see him released in a hostel somewhere in the middle of Scotland. No one wants to see him again, simple as that.”

Ingram, believed to have lived in the house all his life, was jailed for three years and eight months after he was caught with a bag containing sweets, soft toys and lubricant when he met an undercover police officer he believed was the mother of two children.

During his trial, it was heard that Ingram had fantasised in online chats about the ways he wanted to abuse her fictional daughters, who he believed were aged three and five.

The dealer of antique books was said to have become “addicted” to child pornography and he later admitted to police he had already tried and failed to arrange sex with another young girl.

A total of 436 indecent images were found on his computer, including some depicting child porn, rape and bestiality.

Police are expected to set up a public meeting when there is more information about Ingram’s release date.

Cllr Lyn Weber said: “The police are aware that there’s a lot of local concern and have agreed to meet with local residents when they have further information.

“It’s important that local residents are reassured and understand what’s happening. As far as I’m aware there is no imminent release date.”