A "DECEITFUL" child sex offender from Brampton who “paid lip service” to his rehabilitation while secretly downloading indecent child images has been jailed.

In 2021, 57-year-old Bruce Chandler was given a suspended jail term after he was convicted of online child sex offences, which included three allegations that involved him attempting to incite a child to engage in sexual activity.

His two-year suspended sentence includes a sexual harm prevention order to control his access to the internet. He was also made to take a rehabilitation course, designed to address the issues that triggered his offending.

Despite that, Chandler has now admitted seven fresh offences, involving his secret use of internet devices to search for indecent material online. He also downloaded indecent child images and extreme pornography, Carlisle Crown Court heard.

Andrew Evans, prosecuting, said that when police attended the defendant’s home in St Martin’s Close, Brampton, on May 25 to carry out a risk assessment he assured the officers that he had no internet enabled devices.

When the officers made an unannounced return visit two weeks later, Chandler was seen attempting to hide a smart phone under a piece of paper on a coffee table. “He said he’d had it for a year and used it for Facebook and video chats,” said the prosecutor.

Following a search, the police also found an iPad.

An examination of the devices showed that Chandler had repeatedly downloaded and deleted apps, making thousands of internet searches.

He had downloaded “thousands” of video files, many of them pornographic. The images found on his devices included nine Category C indecent child images.

When the police interviewed him, he said that he been using the iPad to look for indecent material which was “very close to the knuckle.”

The material included images of “young girls,” he said.

Chandler’s original offending, the court heard, involved him contacting 'girls online' whom he believed were aged 12 and 13, when he requested topless pictures. The contacts were online decoys designed to trap paedophiles.

His latest offending happened while he was 14-months into the 24-month suspension period of his previous two year sentence.

Mr Evans said that the breach of the sexual harm prevention order had been “persistent” and involved the downloading of thousands of files and deletions on a weekly basis. He presented a “serious risk of harm” from him seeking out and grooming vulnerable children, the court was told.

Andrew Gurney, defending, said Chandler’s experience or prison in recent weeks had been a salutary one. “He wishes to apologise to the court for what he has done,” said the lawyer.

“He’s very anxious to address the underlying issues he faces.”

Judge Michael Fanning noted that the defendant had completed an education programme that was designed to address his previous offending.  “The view of the prosecution is that you have paid lip service to that,” said the judge.

Judge Fanning also noted the previous offending, which involved three allegations of Chandler attempting to incite a child to engage in sexual activity.

The judge told the defendant: “You deny any interest in children aged under 16 but you had nine such images on your computer when you were arrested.”

The author of a pre-sentence background report concluded that Chandler minimised his actions and had shown a “blatant disregard” for a sentencing regime that was put in place to minimise the risk of he poses to children.

“It highlights your deceitful nature,” continued the judge. Chandler had misled and been dishonest with police and probation staff.

The judge said: “There is a high risk of you continuing to offend, primarily on the internet rather than direct contact with children. There is a pattern of offending.” The judge noted the defendant’s intention to move on to have sexual contact with children.

Referring to the rehabilitation work the defendant had agreed to do with the Probation Service, the judge said: "That was all a front; you've made no attempt to mend your ways."

He jailed Chandler for four years. Two years of the sentence represents an activation of the earlier suspended jail term.