A Nottingham man has been found dead prior to being sentenced for child grooming. It follows his arrest organised by ‘paedophile hunters’.
In recent times, a new online trend of ‘paedophile hunting’ has surfaced. Hunters trick sex offenders into meeting with them in public, pretending to be underage and then filming them when the offender realises what is happening.
Ricky Slade, who was 29 at the time, attempted to incite what he thought was a 10 year old girl to meet him. Instead, he was met by members of The Hunted One and then arrested by police.
On awaiting his sentence, the sex offender killed himself in prison after pleading guilty at Nottingham Crown Court to attempting to incite a girl to engage in sexual activity.
The Hunted One says it has caught 42 online groomers since launching 13 months ago, and claims a 100 per cent conviction rate.
“we would urge everyone to leave it to the proper authorities to identify and investigate offenders”
The new phenomenon claims to uphold ‘justice’ within our communities,but this sensationalist emerging way of dealing with such crimes compared to traditional evidence-gathering is coming under fire.
Critics say some risk ruining evidence or scuppering cases because they lack official training, but supporters say they are providing a valuable service to police forces dealing with shrinking resources.
A spokesperson for the NSPCC has said “Although we have every sympathy for concerned parents, we would urge everyone to leave it to the proper authorities to identify and investigate offenders.”
“Engaging in this kind of activity could lead to people getting hurt, or jeopardising a delicate and complex on-going investigation which may put more children at risk of harm.”
Nottinghamshire police and crime commissioner Paddy Tipping has said, “At the end of the day, what do survivors want? They want to see people taken to court, found guilty and sent to prison. We mustn’t engage in a process that threatens that. It is possible,and we need to be careful about it”.
Audio: Sexual abuse victim tells of how she was abused by a paedophile online.
- One in five eight to 11 year old’s and seven in 10 12 to 15 year old’s has a social media profile
- One in four children have experienced something upsetting on a social networking site
- Three-quarters of parents have looked for or received information or advice about how to help their child manage online risk
- The Hunted One says it has caught 42 online groomers since launching 13 months ago, and claims a 100 per cent conviction rate
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