A HYDE man caught by ‘paedophile hunters’ when he attempted to meet a child following sexual grooming has been jailed.
Simon Hammerton pleaded guilty to five counts of attempting to engage in sexual
communication with a child, attempting to meet a child following sexual grooming, attempting to cause a child to watch a sexual act and two counts of attempting to cause a child to engage in penetrative sexual activity after being snared by the STOP Stings Facebook group.
The 32-year-old, of Auburn Avenue, was arrested in July last year at Ashton bus station after he had arranged to meet who he believed to be an 11-year-old girl after speaking to her online.
When he was searched, officers found he was carrying a bag containing alcohol and a packet of condoms.
Subsequent enquiries, including the seizure of his laptops and mobile phones, uncovered that in June last year, Hammerton had been speaking with two ‘girls’ from Leicestershire and Southampton who he believed were both 12-years-old.
During the conversations he would regularly tell them he wanted to kiss them and on one occasion encouraged one girl to send him photos of her in her school uniform or underwear.
Hammerton was also in contact with two other ‘girls’, one he believed to be 11 and the other he believed to be 13.
During both conversations, he would speak sexually and sent them images and videos of him naked, including one video he sent to the 11-year-old girl of him masturbating and ejaculating. He also attempted to persuade her to send a video of her masturbating.
According to STOP Stings: “This man sent one of the most disgusting videos we have ever seen to an 11-year-old, where he could be heard whispering her name as he ejaculated.”
On the day of his arrest, Hammerton was immediately placed under citizen’s arrest before being handed to the police and it was quickly revealed that the ‘girls’ he had been talking to were in fact adults posing as children.
Appearing at Manchester’s Minshull Street Crown Court, he was jailed for five years and four months imprisonment. He has also had a Sexual Harm Prevention Order imposed.
Detective Constable Sue Masheter of Greater Manchester Police’s Phoenix Tameside Child Sexual Exploitation Team said: “Child Sexual Exploitation takes place in many forms and in this case Hammerton engaged in online communications with what he believed were very young children, not sparing any thought for the lasting damage his actions could have.
“Unknown to Hammerton, the ‘children’ he thought he was communicating with were actually adults and thankfully we have now been able to remove a dangerous individual from our community and ensure that he is not able to inflict any further abuse.
“I would like to thank the members of the online safety group, namely STOP for their cooperation throughout this investigation.”