A PERVERT downloaded vile images of children as young as three years old being sexually abused on computers at his home in Leeds.
A court heard Stephen Neilson’s computer was fitted with “advanced” software capable of preventing forensic officers detecting his offending.
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Leeds Crown Court heard officers executed a search warrant at Neilson’s home on Lumby Lane, Pudsey, on November 16 last year after receiving information.
Computer equipment was seized and a total of 14 illegal images were recovered. Eddison Flint, prosecuting, said 12 of the images were at category A - the most serious level of offending. Mr Flint said computers were also fitted with software capable of sharing the images with other people.
Investigations also revealed Neilson had searched internet sites based in Russia and the Pacific Islands - areas known for a lack of internet security.
Neilson, 61, pleaded guilty to two offences of making indecent images of a child and one of possessing a prohibited image of a child.
Ian Cook, mitigating, said Neilson had been an alcoholic for between 20 and 30 years and had committed offences when he had been drinking.
Mr Cook said: “He knows what he was doing was wrong but without alcohol he would not have gone that far.”
He added that Neilson was prepared to receive treatment to prevent him re-offending.
Neilson was given a 12-month prison sentence and ordered to take part in a 20-day rehabilitation programme.
Recorder Paul Greaney QC said: “The public would rightly think that you deserve to go to prison straight away. But the reality is that the public is best served by you receiving treatment so it doesn’t happen again.”