Former South Tyneside man caught possessing indecent images of children

A former South Tyneside man caught possessing indecent images of children has been placed on the sex offenders register.

By Gareth Crickmer
Friday, 29th April 2022, 4:55 am

Nathan Stephen, 25, was living in Embleton Avenue, Horsley Hill, when arrested and charged.

Stephen, now of Brighton Road, Bensham, Gateshead, admitted five charges and did not enter a plea to a sixth.

Prosecutor Claire Armstrong told South Tyneside Magistrates’ Court that a stash of images had been found by investigating officers but some had gone over the limit of police categorisation.

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South Tyneside Magistrates Court.

Stephen was charged with three counts of making an indecent photograph or pseudo-photograph of a child, to which he pleaded guilty.

They relate to him being found in possession of 34 indecent photographs and nine videos at the highest category A level.

Stephen also had three images and two videos at category B, and 69 images and four videos at category C.

He also admitted one charge each of possessing a prohibited image of a child and possession of an extreme pornographic image portraying an act of intercourse with a living animal.

The admitted offences happened in South Shields between January 22, 2016, and October 14, 2020.

Stephen did not enter a plea to a charge of distributing an indecent photograph or pseudo-photograph of a child.

The alleged offence also happened in South Shields, on December 2, 2019.

Miss Armstrong did not reveal how Stephen’s offences came to light, but said: “There are a significant number of images in this case.

“There are 180,000 images that the police have not categorised because they go over the threshold for categorisation.”

Tim Gregory, defending, said Stephen was undergoing professional help related to his offending.

He added: “He’s a young man with no previous convictions, and I think I can say on his behalf that he’s lost his way.”

Magistrates declined jurisdiction and sent Stephen to Newcastle Crown Court to be sentenced. He will appear there on Tuesday, May 24.

They informed him he was immediately subject to the notification requirements of the Sexual Offences Act 2003.

It means within three days he must attend Gateshead police station to confirm a raft of personal details, including his address and passport number.

The length of time he will be subject to the requirements will be imposed at sentencing.