A man who downloaded thousands of child abuse images and videos has walked free from court, after his mum spoke up for him in court.
Dean Clements, 29, of Pickup Street, Clayton-le-Moors, was handed a 12 month jail sentence suspended for two years after pleading guilty to 10 counts of possessing indecent photographs and videos of children, some as young as seven.
Clements’ mum Kay spoke in court to say her son was ‘depressed’ and suffered ‘panic attacks’.
Kay, who was invited to speak in mitigation by Clements’ defence counsel, said: “About seven years ago he was seriously assaulted, he started drinking and that got out of hand and he became a recluse and does not have any friends,
“He suffers with depression, anxiety and panic attacks and since this all started 19 months it has just built up and up.”
Kay added that her son was trying to address ‘the underlying issues’ which caused his offence.
She said: “He will be going to therapy to help with his depression and anxiety and he has been weening himself off drinking.”
Clements’ was arrested in February last year after police executed a warrant at his home address where he lives.
Stephen Parker, prosecuting, said that Clements’ initial decision not to comment on the accusations had at first led to his entire family being placed ‘under suspicion’ of his crimes. He said: “The whole family were under suspicion and the no comment interview did nothing to remedy that.
“The images were catalogued in several various folders entitled ‘pre-teen hardcore’, clearly suggesting that the defendant was aware of what they contained.”
Sentencing Recorder Paul Reid QC said: “You knew what you were doing and knew the serious nature of the images you were downloading, some of the most serious category. It is apparent that you have difficulties of your own, and you have been referred to a mental health team for anxiety and depression.”
Clements’ was sentenced to 12 months in jail suspended for two years, given a community supervision order, a sexual harm prevention order and several computer devices were ordered to be destroyed.