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74 court cases over viewing indecent images of children last year

74 court cases over viewing indecent images of children last year

Published by Grace Mcgachy
11:35am 18th June 2019.

The number of people being prosecuted for this in Norfolk is higher than the last decade.

There were 74 cases where people were accused of viewing indecent images of children last year.

The campaign group Justice has called for first-time offenders who look at such material to attend educational programmes instead of being charged.

But the NSPCC warned that prison must remain an option for people who view “sick images”.

In 2008 54 cases made it to court.

The local trend is less pronounced than that across England and Wales, where the number of prosecutions almost doubled over the period.


Justice has argued for offenders with no relevant criminal record to attend a five-session course to address their behaviour, with one follow-up session eight months later.

While the aim is to reduce pressure on courts, those who failed to complete the sessions would still face prosecution.

In response to Justice’s proposal, an NSPCC spokesperson said:

 

“Viewing such sick images is a crime and prison must remain an option to reflect the severity of it and to protect the public.

But we know that prison alone cannot solve the situation and we must make prevention and rehabilitation a priority to avoid abuse happening in the first place.”

old person on computer


The number of prosecutions in Norfolk last year reflected a fall from 2017, when 125 were recorded.

Commenting on the national figures, a spokesperson for the Crown Prosecution Service said:

"Possessing indecent images of children is a serious offence and we will always seek to bring charges where there is enough evidence and it is in the public interest to do so.”

A Government spokesperson said offenders who view, but don’t create or share, indecent images of children can already be given cautions with tough conditions attached by the police, if prosecutors agree

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