"Predatory" Wick child sex offender jailed

A WICK man dubbed a "predatory sex offender" by police was found in possession of 47,000 indecent images of children.

John Churchley, 59, of Belloc Road, was sentenced to eight years in prison at Hove Crown Court on Tuesday, after pleading guilty to 15 offences, including making, possessing and distributing indecent images of children, at an earlier hearing,

He was arrested last May at the same time as David Keen, 29, from Bognor, who, at the same court, was handed an indeterminate sentence for charges including sexual activity with children under 16 and conspiracy to commit such offences.

His sentence means he will not be released until deemed no longer to be a risk to society.

The mother of one victim, who cannot be named for legal reasons, said words could not express the devastating effect of what the men did to her son.

"No sentence will ever match the lifelong suffering that my son and our family will endure. My son's innocence was stolen.

"Our family is a close-knit, loving one and we have learned the hard way that paedophiles are not the dirty old men in the grubby raincoats, but ordinary-looking men who walk amongst us. This doesn't just happen to other people in other communities but those in ones where you feel safe and secure."

DI Jeff Riley, of Sussex Police's major crime branch, said that Keen and Churchley were predatory sex offenders.

"Keen, in particular, formed relationships with boys from a very early age. He was very sophisticated in his grooming process. He met Churchley through an online dating site and within weeks of meeting him

he was offering the boys to Churchley for a fee.

"I hope that this sentence will allow the victims and their families to now put this dreadful episode of their life behind them and start to look to the future." They will be on the sex offenders' register for life.

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