Portsmouth student caught with nearly 4,500 child abuse images on iPhone

A STUDENT caught with nearly 4,500 images of child abuse looked at them for the ‘thrill’ and sexual gratification, a court heard.

Friday, 9th July 2021, 1:12 pm

Portsmouth Crown Court heard Thomas Christie, 21, used the app Discord to access the images - some depicting infants aged between newborn and three months old.

Police raided his home and he immediately confessed they would find child abuse images on his iPhone.

Analysts found 989 images rated the most severe at category A. There were 1,355 at B and 2,135 at C.

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Portsmouth Crown Court. Picture: Chris Moorhouse

Christie, of Victoria Road South, in Southsea, also had an image of extreme pornography featuring an animal. He admitted having 64 images of prohibited images of children.

He confessed downloading the images for three to four years - but could have been doing so from the age of 13, the court heard.

Christie looked at the images two to three times a week at first but then ‘slowed down’ but never deleted them.

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‘He said he was somebody who didn’t like children,’ said prosecutor Simon Foster detailing Christie’s police interview.

Mr Foster added: ‘He said what he was doing was not good but did it for the thrill of it.

‘He agreed he (included) babies and toddlers in various searches.’

The isolated and lonely defendant admitted getting sexual gratification from the images, the court heard.

Imposing a 12-month jail term suspended for two years, judge Tim Mousley QC said: ‘It’s quite clear to me you have a sexual interest in children.’

Judge Mousley spared Christie prison due to the ‘strong recommendation’ by probation for rehabilitation work, his remorse, guilty pleas and the fact he has no previous.

Christie must complete 20 days’ rehabilitation activities and a sex offender programme. He must sign the sex offenders’ register and be subjected to a sexula harm prevention order for five years.

He admitted three charges of possession of indecent images.

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