A 51-year-old paedophile who has been jailed for preying on a frightened 14-year-old boy told police he had “fallen in love with the wrong person”.
Jeremy Peter Gliddon admitted eight counts of sexual activity with a child and taking and possessing indecent photos of a child – six videos and 273 images.
The offences took place during a prolonged period of grooming.
Rachel Knight, prosecuting at Merthyr Tydfil Crown Court, said the boy, who cannot be named for legal reasons, was in his early teens when Gliddon started a sexual relationship with him.
He had already taken intimate photographs of him but started sexual contact started when the boy was 14.
The court heard Gliddon, described as a loner, would prey on the boy as he showed him pornography.
“He was too frightened to refuse,” said Ms Knight.
“The defendant would tell him that if they were partners he could have everything. That must be evidence of the defendant’s manipulation.”
The matters came to light when the boy confided in a family member in May this year and the police were brought in.
Ms Knight said the boy had stopped seeing Gliddon. She told the court: “The teenager had become angry and had problems in school and had resorted to taking drugs.”
In interview, he told police the sexual relationship was consensual and had started when the boy had come to him with his fears over having sex with girls.
“I fell in love with him. I simply fell in love with the wrong person,” he told them.
John Ryan, defending Gliddon, of the Tredegar Arms, Dowlais, Merthyr Tydfil, said Gliddon’s belief that he was in a relationship with the boy was genuine but “distorted”.
“The stress and shame of the case has no doubt contributed to the heart attack he suffered,” Mr Ryan said.
“He gave no thought to the damage he was causing. He said he never meant to hurt him. He just loved him.”
Judge Richard Twomlow jailed Gliddon for six years and four months and told him: “He said that he did not want to do it but was scared to any no and did not say no because he thought something bad would happen to him.”
Gliddon was made the subject of a restraining order and Sexual Offences Prevention Order, both indefinitely, and will have to sign as a sex offender for life.
He will also have to pay a £120 victim surcharge.