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Sex offender used library to trawl web

James Craft, 24, was jailed for 18 months after breaching a sexual offences order which requires him to notify police within three days of a change of name or address.

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A sex offender who used false names to access ‘fetish pornography’ and a swingers web site at Accrington Library has been jailed.

James Craft, 24, was jailed for 18 months after breaching a sexual offences order which requires him to notify police within three days of a change of name or address.

Craft has two convictions for sexual activity with a child when he was a minor himself and 14 convictions for breaching requirement orders dating back to 2004.

The hearing was told he used three false names on more than 40 occasions between June and August to gain access to pornography and a dating web site.

The court was told that members of staff at the hostel where Craft was staying on Lydia Street, Accrington became concerned about his whereabouts during the day and alerted police.

On August 12 he was arrested at Accrington Library for the suspected breach of his notification requirement and at Burnley Crown Court on Monday, September 8 he pleaded guilty to three counts of being a registered sex offender and failing to comply with requirements.

In mitigation Paul Robinson, defending, said that Craft had ‘struggled’ with learning difficulties which had caused ‘a degree of social problems’ for him.

He said: “Unfortunately he has behaved inappropriately on a number of occasions in the past.

“But at the hostel he did not cause any problems for the staff and there was never any suggestion that they did not know where he was, as they pointed police in the direction of the library.

“He did not use a false name to get access to children and there’s no evidence that the sites he accessed were illegal.”

In sentencing Judge Newell warned Craft, of Lang Street, Blackpool that his failure to comply with orders would result in ‘longer and longer’ prison terms.

He said; “This is the ninth time you have appeared in front of a court for a criminal offence. You have only committed an actual offence against a person on two occasions, the rest are for breaches of orders.

“You are going to be going to prison for longer and longer by breaching the orders.

“It is up to you Mr Craft comply with the orders and there will not be a problem.

“If you fail to comply you will go to prison. A simple punitive sentence is necessary.”