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Crawley man gets 14 years for child sex offences

A Crawley man has been sentenced to 14 years in jail after pleading guilty to 17 child related sex offences against a girl under 13.

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James Tower, 30, Crawley, began to abuse the girl in 2016, and the abuse continued until the victim’s mother became suspicious in June 2018, and challenged him.

Officers from Sussex Police promptly arrested Tower and, following a complex investigation, he was charged with sexual offences against a child, including assault by touching.

He admitted the offences in court and was sentenced at Lewes Crown Court on Monday 26th November to 14 years in prison.

Detective Constable Jake Dallaway, of Sussex Police’s Safeguarding Investigation Unit, who led the investigation, said:

“Tower subjected his victim to several years of abuse, ruining her childhood for the sake of his own gratification.

“I hope the sentence will provide some closure to the victim and her family, and I hope, with the appropriate support, they can move on from this horrific abuse.

“I’d like to commend the victim and her mother for their bravery in coming forward and the support they have given us throughout what has been a very difficult time for them.

“I also hope that this outcome gives other people who have been or are suffering similar abuse the confidence to come forward.

You can read our advice on how to do this here.”

More news: Crawley Post Office closed after robbery attempt

Crime

Former Surrey man who now resides in Crawley sentenced for online offences

A 28-year-old man has been given a suspended sentence for inciting a child to engage in sexual activity.

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Adam O’Sullivan, of Hunter Road, Crawley, O’Sullivan believed he was talking to a 14-year-old girl but was actually speaking to an investigating officer posing as a teenage girl on Kik messenger.

In May 2016 while living in Weybridge, O’Sullivan used the messaging app to entice the 14-year-old girl he thought he was speaking to, to send indecent images of herself to him. He also sent indecent images of himself.

During their conversation he knew the user was underage but continued to request for various indecent images, they even discussed meeting up.

He was also in various online groups that were sharing indecent videos and images of children.

O’Sullivan was charged with attempting to incite a child to engage in sexual activity and three counts of making indecent images of a child in July 2018. He initially pleaded not guilty to all charges at Guildford Crown Court but changed his plea to guilty just before trial in February. He was sentenced today (18 March), to 22 weeks in custody, suspended for 18 months.

O’Sullivan was also given a seven-year Sexual Harm Prevention Order.

DC Rene Murdoch said:

“Thankfully O’Sullivan was talking to the police instead of an innocent child and no one was hurt.

“Due to our undercover work we were able to identify an offender, and he will now be prevented from having contact with young persons and restrictions in place around his use of computers and the internet.

“We work tirelessly in Surrey to keep people safe from sexual offenders who pose a risk to children. Some of this work isn’t always visible but rest assured it goes on.”

Surrey Polices top tips:

We strongly advise to turn privacy settings on your social media accounts on to prevent messages and requests from strangers.

Do not accept requests from someone you don’t know.

Never give your personal details or send images of yourself to someone online.

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