More checks to be made of devices seized from sex offender

A SEX offender has admitted having an undeclared computer with software capable of wiping clean details of contents and usage.

Alexander Richardson, 33, received a two-year community order in March last year after admitting downloading 10,184 indecent images of children, up to June 2018.

As part of the sentence he was subject of a Sexual Harm Prevention Order (SHPO) which included disclosing details of any device capable of accessing the internet.

Durham Crown Court heard he was subject of an unannounced visit by the public protection unit on June 8, when he claimed to have only mobile phones.

Anthony Pettengell, prosecuting, said when told a search of the router would be made for evidence of other devices, Richardson admitted having a second-hand laptop, claiming to have bought it since the previous monitoring visit, prior to Christmas.

But he claimed to have forgotten about further visits and revealed he accessed ‘eraser’ software to wipe details of usage up to that day.

He claimed he used the alias “Tears of Puppies” to access a poker gambling site.

Judge Ray Singh said there was “a clear inference” he used the software to cover up similar activity for which he was convicted last year.

Richardson, of Castlefields, Bournmoor, who has been in custody since his arrest last month, admitted breaching four terms of his SHPO.

Judge Singh adjourned for a fortnight to allow for further checks of the contents of the computer and a mobile phone also seized from Richardson.

The Northern Echo | Durham