Sick couple who abused eight-year-old girl and fantasised about kidnapping another child jailed

A depraved couple who sexually abused an eight-year-old girl and fantasised about kidnapping another child have been jailed.

Robert Stanley, 36, and his partner Danielle Schofield, 34, talked about kidnapping, gagging and keeping a child chained up as their ‘sex slave’.

In August 2019, the sick pair had a video call in which Schofield sexually abused an eight-year-old girl.

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Stanley took screenshots of the abuse for his gratification after he encouraged and incited Schofield.

Robert Stanley, 36, and his partner Danielle Schofield, have been jailed for sexually abusing a child.

National Crime Agency (NCA) detectives began an investigation last April after receiving intelligence Stanley had accessed three Category A - the most serious - child abuse videos.

Officers arrested unemployed Stanley, of Tilbury, Essex, at Schofield’s home in Dewsbury on April 23 last year.

Stanley was released on conditional bail while the investigation continued.

Forensic examination of Stanley’s mobile phone showed he had sent Schofield a Category B indecent image of a child on May 6, 2019.

She was subsequently arrested on 20 May 2020.

Schofield was also released on conditional bail while the NCA’s investigation continued.

Officers uncovered disturbing chats between the pair in which they talked about child abuse, discussed alleged previous abuse of the girl and plotted future abuse.

There was evidence that Stanley had four Category B images on his phone including two screenshots he took of the video call where Schofield abused the eight-year-old girl.

Officers identified and safeguarded the youngster, the NCA said.

On September 30, 2020, NCA officers arrested Stanley, in Tilbury and Schofield, in Dewsbury, for serious child sexual offences. They were remanded.

The despicable duo admitted arranging or facilitating the commission of a child sex offence, sexual assault of a child under the age of 13, taking indecent images of children and distributing indecent images of children.

Stanley was jailed for four-and-a-half years and Schofield for three years and four months at Bradford Crown Court on Friday, April 23.

They were also ordered to sign the Sex Offenders' Register for life and were made subject to sexual harm prevention orders.

Jacque Beer, NCA regional head of investigations said: “There is no greater priority for the NCA than protecting children from sexual abuse.

“These were sickening crimes where Stanley and Schofield had disturbing conversations about their fantasies. A particular fantasy of theirs became a reality when Schofield sexually abused a child while they were on a video call.

“The NCA prioritises these cases to safeguard vulnerable children and prosecute offenders.”