Crawley man given 10-year Sexual Harm Prevention Order
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A man who uploaded indecent images of children onto multiple media platforms has been convicted in court.
Shain Hunt was given a 10-year Sexual Harm Prevention Order (SHPO) for the offences committed between June and September 2022.
Police received 26 separate referrals from companies including Google, Snapchat and Discord that the images had been uploaded onto devices from his associated addresses in Sussex, Warwickshire and Suffolk.
He was arrested and questioned by all three forces, but on each occasion he vehemently denied the allegations and claimed he was being hacked.
Officers seized and examined his devices, which took several months, and Hunt was therefore bailed numerous times to allow investigators to gather enough evidence to secure a realistic prospect of a prosecution.
He attended each of his bail dates in possession of a bible, and when details of the allegations were read out to him during interview he purported to feel physically sick.
But detectives saw through his act and sought to finally put a stop to his offending.
The forces worked together to carry out simultaneous arrest attempts at all four addresses, and this ensured any devices in Hunt’s possession could be seized.
He was arrested at his flat in Crawley, on 17 July 2022 and found with an iPad beside him. This contained hundreds of Category A images – the most serious – of babies.
Hunt, 24, was eventually charged with making 279 Category A, 246 Category B and 957 Category C indecent images of children.
Due to the overwhelming evidence presented to him, he pleaded guilty and was sentenced at Lewes Crown Court on 10 August.
He was sentenced to 18 months’ imprisonment – suspended for 18 months – and given a 10-year SHPO. He was also ordered to pay £250 costs and a £156 victim surcharge.
Charlotte Moore, of the Sussex Police Paedophile Online Investigations Teams (POLIT), said: “Hunt made every attempt to avoid responsibility for his actions, even suggesting that he was being framed.
“But thanks to our officers, working in conjunction with teams from other forces across the country, we were able to pull together a significant case for the Crown Prosecution Service to authorise charges against him.
“The images he possessed were among the most harrowing we have ever seen, and it is with great courage that our officers have sifted through and categorised every single one. This should not be just ‘part of the job’ for anyone, and we are comforted to know that Sussex Police has a number of mechanisms in place to support officers where needed.
“We are satisfied that the Sexual Harm Protection Order comes with a number of stringent prohibitions, which are aimed to prevent further offending and protect vulnerable people from harm.”