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Tuesday, 23 September 2014

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'Depraved sexual deviant' who filmed himself performing sex acts on sleeping women jailed

A man who used his mobile phone to film himself sexually assaulting two sleeping women has been labelled a “depraved sexual deviant”.

Antony Nichols photo
Antony Nichols

A judge at Carlisle Crown Court said 55-year-old Antony Nichols – who was already on the sex offenders’ register for a previous offence of groping a woman in a pub – looked upon women as sexual objects and had no respect for them.

Nichols, of English Street, Longtown, pleaded guilty to two charges of sexual assault.

He was jailed for five years and three months yesterday, put on the sex offenders’ register indefinitely and banned from owning a mobile phone or any other device with a camera.

Nichols pleaded not guilty to two related charges of voyeurism – recording women doing private acts “with an intention that he would later view the image for sexual gratification, knowing that they had not given their consent” – and these were left lying on the court file.

Prosecuting counsel Kenneth Grant told the court that Nichols’ two women victims had no idea they had been filmed until his videos of them were found by chance after he accidentally dropped his mobile phone’s SIM card in a pub in Longtown.

A man found the SIM card and took it home, where his girlfriend put it into her phone to see what was on it.

To her surprise, Mr Grant said, the card contained film of Nichols performing sex acts on the naked women as they slept.

And the woman even recognised one of the victims as one of her friends, the court heard.

When that woman was shown the images of herself being abused by Nichols, Mr Grant said, “she had no knowledge that she had ever been videoed as depicted and had never given permission for such a thing”.

Mr Grant said that when quizzed by the police after his arrest Nichols falsely claimed that both women had been aware that he had been filming them, though he later admitted they might not have been awake for some of it.

Defence barrister Alison Whalley said Nichols now acknowledged the “abhorrence and breach of trust” of what he had done.

Judge Paul Batty QC, the Honorary Recorder of Carlisle, said he found the case “troubling”.

He told Nichols the “revolting and degrading” films indicated the “depth of your depravity”.

He added: “You are a sexual deviant. The darker side of your character indicates that you pose a danger to women. You don’t respect them and look on them as sexual objects.”

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