Suspended sentence for Cork man caught with child pornography

Suspended sentence for Cork man caught with child pornography

A Midleton man caught with child pornography more than six years ago has completely turned his life around to address his child pornography addiction, a court has heard.

The sentencing judge said that Stephen Purvis, 47, of 20 The Green, Tír Cluain, Midleton, County Cork, was lucky to have the support of family in addressing his issues and becoming a very low risk of any re-offending.

Judge Brian O’Callaghan imposed a total jail term of 18 months which he suspended at Cork Circuit Criminal Court.

Detective Sergeant Seán Leahy said the activities of the accused online were monitored and in particular his use of a website where child pornography images were available.

Gardaí went to his home back on March 1, 2013 and found that he had 58 category 1 images, the most serious grade of images involving children in sexual acts with other children or adults, and 88 images of category 2 images depicting child nudity. Seven category 1 videos and four category 2 videos were also found.

Det Sgt Leahy said the accused was cooperative and had no previous convictions.

Judge Brian O’Callaghan said, “Mr Stephen Purvis has pleaded guilty to a most serious offence – possession of category 1 and category two images and videos.

“The court notes that the penalties available from non-custodial to a maximum sentence of five years.

“This is not a victimless crime. The victims are not just society, but the fact that images and videos are available to other people. (Without people viewing images) the young children abused to produce these vile images would not be subjected to this torture which is what it is. It is not just an offence committed on a laptop. There must be an element of deterrence.

“In mitigation, the court has to take into consideration the early signed plea. He will remain on the Sex Offenders Register. He made full admissions. The court must take into consideration the time gap, that he is being dealt with more than five years later. That had to have an impact on him. He must be treated as a first time offender. The court notes he was addicted to child pornography.

“The report (from psychoanalyst) describes him as being of very low risk of reoffending. Not only has this man shown an appreciation for his wrongdoing but has addressed it quite successfully. His family have to be complimented in supporting him. He is lucky to have that support, that he is not on his own.”

The judge said he would suspend the 18-month sentence to incentivise rehabilitation further rehabilitation.

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