Nailsea man downloaded thousands of child abuse images - court
A MARRIED former bank worker who downloaded thousands of child abuse photos from the internet has been told to get treatment.
Marc Drew appeared to be a respectable family man, Bristol Crown Court heard, but police monitoring paedophile file-sharing websites pinpointed his illicit activities.
Drew was forthright when officers turned up at his door. The 31-year-old, of Yew Tree Gardens, Nailsea, admitted 16 charges of making indecent photographs of a child and a further charge of possessing prohibited images of children. Judge Carol Hagen gave Drew a 12-week jail term, suspended for two years, and told him to complete an internet sexual offenders programme. She also imposed a five-year Sexual Offences Prevention Order banning Drew from unmonitored internet use.
Judge Hagen told him they were very serious offences which had to be marked with a prison sentence, but she could suspend that sentence.
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The judge said she had taken into account Drew's early plea, frankness, former good character and genuine remorse. She also acknowledged his starting assessment to understand his behaviour, how he had lost his marriage, family and job and the fact he had been assessed as a low risk of re-offending.
Kenneth Bell, prosecuting, said police who examined Drew's computer equipment found he had 15,068 images and 290 movies.
Nearly 1,000 photos were deemed to be in second highest category of concern, level four, showing children in full intimacy, the court heard.
Drew told police he had been bullied at school and, after having a crush on a boy aged 13, started downloading images of children. Most featured boys aged ten to 16.
The court heard Drew, who had separated from his wife and children, had contacted the Lucy Faithful Foundation to seek help.
Nicholas Arthur, defending, said most images were in the lowest "erotic posing" category. He said: "You can download in an indiscriminate fashion. You can import material which has not been inspected or specifically sought."