North East BBC journalist sentenced over sickening child abuse images

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A pervert was caught with a sickening collection of child abuse images on his home computer - along with a "confession" that he had done nothing wrong.

Lloyd Watson, a BBC journalist and graduate of Sunderland University, had a stash of 26 videos and 10 pictures of youngsters suffering shocking abuse.

One film, about a six year old "slave" showed a young girl in severe distress during a vile ordeal.

Alongside the horrific haul, investigators found a document entitled "confessions.text", in which the 33-year-old pervert tried to explain that he had done nothing wrong.

Watson, who worked for the BBC News website in Newcastle, had written: "I start by saying, let me explain, I have done nothing wrong here.

"Damage has been done. It is the people who made the material that should be hunted down.

"They are the ones putting these kids through this. I am not condoning it, nor am I helping it."

Watson described some of the material as "beautiful" and said some of the abuse victims were "putting on a show" for the people watching.

Watson explained he had viewed the shocking images for "cheap thrills".

Judge Amanda Rippon branded him "grotesque" and told him: "These are children, you are using children for a cheap thrill."

Judge Rippon said those who watch images of child abuse contribute to the victims' humiliation and suffering and that the viewing is "criminal offending of the vilest kind".

The judge added: "Every viewing of the child being abused is an abuse of that child, whether he thinks it is or not."

The court heard Watson has now changed his attitudes and sought professional to help deal with "deficiencies in his thinking".

Judge Rippon sentenced him to nine months imprisonment, suspended for two years, with ten years on the sex offenders register and a 15 year sexual harm prevention order.

Watson, of Bishops Park Road, Gateshead, who has no other convictions, admitted three charges of making indecent photographs.

A spokeswoman for the BBC said: "“He will no longer be working for the BBC. His crimes were entirely unrelated to his work for us.”