Sex offender blames cat death for reoffending

Adrian Miles, who no longer lives in Honiton

Adrian Miles, who no longer lives in Honiton - Credit: Express and Star

A sex offender blamed the death of his cat for downloading more than 1,600 child abuse images on his phone.

Adrian Miles also claimed to be under severe stress from a stalker when he accessed the images of girls aged six to 12 in 2020.

Police found girls’ clothing at his home in Honiton which he admitted he used for sexual stimulation. There were search terms on his phone showing he had looked for child images on the internet.

He was on the sex offenders register because he received a suspended sentence in 2016 for identical offences which were committed when he was living in the Midlands.

He was spared an immediate jail sentence for the new offences after a judge at Exeter Crown Court heard that Miles, who suffers from bipolar disorder, depression, and a sleep disorder, has already sought help from the Lucy Faithfull Foundation charity.

Miles, aged 55, now of Lower Earley, Reading, admitted three counts of making, by downloading, indecent images of children. He was jailed for 12 months, suspended for a year, and sent on a sex offenders’ course with 30 days of rehabilitation activities and £350 costs.

He was also put on he sex offenders’ register, banned from working with children, and made subject of a Sexual Harm Prevention Order which controls his contact with children and allows the police to monitor his online activity.

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The judge made it clear that his decision to suspend the sentence had nothing at all to do with Miles’s cat.

Prosecutor Victoria Bastock, said police found 1,631 images on Miles’s phone when they raided his home in Honiton in February 2020, of which just four were in the worst category, which shows penetrative abuse.

All but 36 were at the lowest level, showing child nudity or sexual posing.

The images were of girls aged six to 12, there were search terms indicative of an interest in such material, and others seeking to find out how to clear the images from the phone.

Police also found a bag of clothing suitable for girls aged six to 12 which he admitted he used for sexual gratification.

Herc Ashworth, defending, said Miles was under great psychological strain at the time as a result of being the victim of harassment, which led to him moving house four times in the space of months.

His mother was suffering from terminal cancer and his beloved cat had died in October 2019, causing a psychological decline which led him to stop taking the medication he needed to treat his bi-polar disorder.

Mr Ashworth said: “The death of his cat was very difficult for someone who had very little human interaction.

"He came off his medication and was in a desperate state of mind. His behaviour more manic and depressed.”

He said Miles has stayed out of trouble for more than two years since his arrest and paid £800 to attend an online course run by the Lucy Faithfull Foundation to address his behaviour.

He is now making a conscious effort to socialise more, is doing charity work for Ukraine,  and has got a new cat.