Man given three-year sentence for attempt to meet girl for sex
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A man who travelled more than 100 miles to try to meet someone he thought was a teenage girl for sex in Crawley after online contact, has now been given a three-year prison sentence.
Nigel McDermott, 53, a builders merchant, of Hawks Ridge, Harnham, Wilts, was sentenced at Hove Crown Court on Tuesday 14 July, having pleaded guilty at a previous hearing to facilitating a child sexual offence.
He will be a registered sex offender and was given a Sexual Harm Prevention Order severely restricting his access to children and computers, both to last until further court notice.
The prosecution, authorised by the CPS, followed an intelligence-led investigation by the Sussex Police Paedophile Online Investigation Team (POLIT), working closely with the South East Regional Organised Crime Unit (SEROCU).
Communications devices were seized when POLIT officers arrested McDermott in a car park at Tilgate Park, Crawley, on 12 February.
Enquiries have confirmed that no child was at risk.
POLIT Investigator David Sharpe said; "This arrest followed a proactive, intelligence led investigation, part of our continuing priority to protect children from sexual exploitation from those who seek to do them harm.
“If you have been a victim of child sexual abuse, or have information about anyone else who has, please contact us either online or by calling 101. We will always follow up allegations of abuse, no matter when they occurred. Victims can talk in confidence to experienced Investigators and we can also help them get access to a range of other support services.”
For further advice about child sex exploitation and sources of support see the Sussex Police website