A depraved couple groomed a child online in a bid to lure her into a meet-up for sex – yet only one of the pair was jailed yesterday.
Andrew Peat, 28, of Broadbottom Road, Hyde, pleaded guilty to causing a child to engage in sexual activity, causing a child to watch a sexual act and nine counts of making indecent images.
He was sentenced to two years in prison at Manchester Minshull Street Crown Court yesterday.
However his former girlfriend walked free from court.
Amy Willett, 22, of Haslemere Drive, Cheadle Hulme, pleaded guilty to causing a child to engage in sexual activity, but her 12 months sentence was suspended for two years.
Detective Constable Phil Kennedy said: “Both defendants knew they were in touch with a 15-year-old girl, but that did not stop them from their campaign of online grooming.”
Peat approached the victim, a 15-year-old girl from the West Midlands, on a social networking site in June last year.
Despite the victim’s age was clearly stated on her profile page, within minutes Peat’s messages were of a sexually explicit nature.
He said that he and his then girlfriend, Willett, were willing to meet her.
A few days later Willett herself was in contact with the girl, and contact between all three took place on email, phone and the social networking site.
Many of the messages were sexually explicit, and included plans to meet the victim and entice her into sex. During their contact, Peat also sent images of a sexual nature to the victim.
The police were called when the victim’s mother found out about the messages.
After Peat’s arrest, nine indecent images of children were found on his home computer.
“The discovery of nine indecent images at Peat’s house illustrates that he had no issues with child sex offending. Indecent images of this nature endorse the abuse of children,” said DC Kennedy.
“Today’s outcome illustrates that Greater Manchester Police, working closely with partner agencies such as the Child Exploitation Online Protection Centre (CEOP), is committed to tackling the issue of online abuse.”