A judge has allowed a paedophile to walk free from court and continue using Facebook for the second time despite him repeatedly accessing the site to groom children.
Judge Graham Hume Jones said banning Callum Evans from using Facebook would be “particularly excessive” after he was caught two years ago using it to groom two teenage boys and meet up with them to molest them.
Despite being found using Facebook again to try and trick 13 boys and one girl to send him pornographic photos, the 21-year-old appeared before the same judge, who allowed him to remain on the site for a second time.
Judge Hume Jones has previously been criticised for his sentencing, after the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) referred one of his cases to the Attorney General for ‘undue leniency.’
Taunton Crown Court heard that in 2011 Judge Hume Jones gave Evans a community order but didn’t ban him from using Facebook after he was caught using the site to encourage boys to send naked photos, as he said this would deprive him of the ‘social traffic’ his peers took for granted.
Weeks after being convicted, Evans created a new alias on Facebook, which he used to pose as a teenage girl to convince other teenagers to send him pornographic photos of themselves.
He tried to groom 13 boys and one girl between the ages of 13 and 15 and was found with 648 sexually explicit images of children, with some in the most serious category – grade four.
He was caught after the parents of a 14-year-old boy found sexually explicit images on his mobile phone and police found they had been sent from Evans’ mobile phone – just a year after he had appeared in court.
Evans, from Queen Camel, near Yeovil, Somerset, admitted 17 charges of inciting a child to engage in pornography and four counts of inciting a child to engage in a sexual act.
He also admitted breaching his sex offenders’ prevention order on three occasions, and was given a six month deferred order at Taunton Crown Court, by Judge Hume Jones.
The court heard how Evans, described as being from a good middle class family, was first convicted of possessing indecent images in 2009.
When he was 17 he started using Facebook to contact underage boys and ask them to send him images using their mobile phones. If they refused he posed as a girl instead.
Patrick Mason, mitigating, said Evans had lost his chance of going to university because of his crimes.
He said: “In essence, there is a single pattern of behaviour, committed for two years between the age of 18 and 20, and due in part to the somewhat addictive nature of the internet.”
In 2011 Evans admitted six charges of making an indecent image of a child, five charges of causing or inciting a child to take part in pornography and two charges of sexual activity with a child. He was given a three year community order and allowed to remain on the site.
In 2012 Judge Hume Jones jailed a driver for 18 months after she killed a 13-year-old girl while racing her boyfriend. She was convicted of causing death by dangerous driving and her boyfriend was jailed for seven years.