Pervert targeted boys via website

Alex Nicholson

Alex Nicholson

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A PERVERT has been jailed for sex offences against boys he met while trawling a children’s chatroom.

Alex Nicholson sobbed when he was sent down for two years and barred from using youngsters’ websites for 10 years.

The 24-year-old, of Westbourne Drive, Shiney Row, befriended two 12-year-old boys on the popular Habbo Hotel site, where children can adopt and play with virtual pets.

Newcastle Crown Court heard Nicholson convinced the boys to chat with him via webcam, where they would then be exposed to sickening live footage of him committing a sex act on himself.

Nicholson was caught when the mother of one of the boys, who were friends, turned on the family computer where her son had accidentally left himself logged on to the MSN internet portal.

Using the screen name “Axel”, Nicholson carried out a lewd act after persuading her to switch on the webcam, believing he was talking to her son.

The son and his friend were then spoken to by the police.

Prosecutor Amanda Rippon told the court: “One boy said he had been visiting children’s chatroom Habbo Hotel, where children can adopt pets and dress in funny clothes.

“This man had been in there. That is how he first made contact.

“The second boy explained when he had gone to the children’s chatroom, the defendant had adopted him and his friend and said ‘I love children’.”

Nicholson was arrested and officers found 63,000 pornographic images on his computer, 442 of which were indecent images of children.

He told police he “got turned on by children having sex,” and admitted he had been having an illegal relationship with a 15-year-old boy.

The court heard Nicholson had filmed himself engaging in sexual activity with the boy, who agreed to what was going on despite him being too young to give his consent.

Judge Roger Thorn jailed Nicholson, who sobbed throughout the hearing, for two years.

The judge said: “I take your demeanour to be showing, as clearly as anyone could, your remorse, shame and guilt for what you have done.

“All that said, your offending here is of an alarming nature.”

Nicholson admitted engaging in sexual activity in the presence of a child, engaging in sexual activity with a child and making and producing indecent images of children.

Jamie Adams, defending, said Nicholson is a “very, very vulnerable person”.

Mr Adams added: “He knows it is not right to have behaved the way he had, but the very fact he recognises that is a massive step.”

Nicholson also has to register as sex offender and abide by a Sexual Offences Prevention Order, which bans him from children’s websites – both for 10 years.

Twitter: @sunderlandecho