Ipswich paedophile jailed for six years and eight months

Ipswich Crown Court

Ipswich Crown Court

An Ipswich paedophile has been jailed for nearly seven years after admitting four charges relating to the abuse of children.

Stephen Hart

Stephen Hart - Credit: Archant

Stephen Hart, of Ranelagh Road, was sentenced to six years and eight months’ imprisonment when he appeared before Judge John Devaux at Ipswich Crown Court.

The 30-year-old Hart had previously pleaded guilty to two charges of causing or inciting a child aged under 13 to engage in sexual activity.

Hart had also pleaded guilty to two counts of causing a child under 13 to watch a sexual act.

All four offences took place in September last year.

He admitted the charges when he appeared before South East Suffolk Magistrates Court in Ipswich last month.

The case was then committed to the town’s crown court.

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Hart was arrested by police in October last year.

After being interviewed, he was released on bail pending further enquiries.

Suffolk and Norfolk Constabulary’s hi-tech crime unit was involved in the inspection of Hart’s computer which was seized during the inquiry.

In addition to his jail term Hart was made subject to a sexual harm prevention order for an indefinite period.

He was also placed on sex offences’ register until further notice.

After the sentencing Detective Constable Brian Malster, the investigating officer in the case, said; “Hart was originally arrested and interviewed on October 3, 2014, and initially denied the allegations, saying the children were ‘telling stories’.

“He was bailed for further enquiries, but police were contacted a few days later by Hart who said he wanted to confess.

“He was re-arrested and made admissions to inciting the children to engage in sexual activity and admitted that he had shown them websites where other people were engaged in sexual behaviour.

“Further evidence was gathered and he was subsequently charged.

“Any offences of this nature provoke strong feelings and the sentence today shows how seriously this type of crime is treated by the courts.”