Man jailed after sting by ‘paedo hunter’

A rollercoaster fan has been jailed after he was caught in a sting by an online ‘paedo hunter’ when he used an online theme parks forum as a cover to groom children.

Andrew Sealey, 39, of Milborne Port, Somerset, was jailed for three years and four months.

He pleaded guilty at Southampton Court to eight charges of attempting to incite a child to engage in sexual activity and one of attempting to meet a child after sexual grooming.

He was arrested after he was caught by Shane Brannigan at Hampshire theme park Paultons Park, where he had arranged to meet a 15-year-old “girl” for sex in a toilet cubicle.

Judge Peter Henry also made him subject to a sexual harm prevention order and ordered the destruction of his laptop.

The judge said: “I have concerns about these types of stings. On the one hand I can fully understand the obvious concerns of the public and people who may therefore have been abused.

“On the other hand, to rely upon this activity of self-styled ‘paedo hunters’ as a base for criminal prosecutions is fraught with dangers.

"In particular, there is a thin line between someone being entrapped or evidence not being admissible for some reason and a legitimate inquiry.”


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