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Convicted Sunderland pervert jailed after sex chat with police officer posing as 'teenage girl'

A convicted pervert who was caught trying to meet a teenage girl after engaging in sex chat has been jailed.

By Alex Storey
Monday, 23rd May 2022, 3:37 pm

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John Vanstone thought he was talking to a 14-year-old online but was actually in dialogue with a decoy profile set up by the Child Online Safety Team.

Newcastle Crown Court heard that as a result, the 63-year-old was in breach of a sexual harm prevention order imposed on him in 2018.

John Vanstone.

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"You appear before the court for another breach of that order.

"You used the internet platform Meetville to contact a profile of somebody called Megan.

"Their profile said they were 18 but it was disclosed in the first message they were 14.

"You persisted in conversation with that profile which moved from Meetville to WhatsApp.

"The exchange rapidly became very sexualised."

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Vanstone discussed taking the girl to McDonalds, buying her underwear, and recording video footage of her.

The court was told that he also told her to keep it a secret and not to tell her mother.

Vanstone, of Rippon Street, Sunderland, admitted breaching a sexual harm prevention order and attempting to meet a child following sexual grooming.

The court heard that he was apprehended by members of the team at a railway station in Sunderland where he had planned to collect the teen, who he thought had travelled from Hartlepool.

Jamie Adams, defending, told the court that Vanstone had been working to address his behaviour while remanded in custody.

Mr Adams said: "This kind of offending only began after the break up of his marriage when he was left very much by himself.

"Things just seemed to have gone down hill more and more since then.

"He does have some work experience and has attained some qualifications completed in his last custodial sentence."

However, Judge Moreland took the view a further custodial sentence was appropriate and sentenced Vanstone to three years and three months behind bars.

He was also made subject to the sex offender's register for life.