Sunderland Paedophile filmed children on the Metro

Metro sign with CCTV camera in background.
Metro sign with CCTV camera in background.
Have your say

A PAEDOPHILE is facing jail after filming children on the Metro.

Robert Hart secretly shot the footage, which was found on a memory card at his Sunderland home.

Although the images were seemingly innocent, a court heard that the act placed him in breach of a Sexual Offences Prevention Order.

Sunderland magistrates were told that the 43-year-old was banned from owning equipment which could store digital images.

But a check at his home revealed he had bought video cameras and an iPod.

Keith Laidlaw, prosecuting, said the five-year order was imposed by the court in December last year.

Hart was found to have flouted it when police visited his house in The Royalty last Sunday.

Officers had to bang on the door and shout through the letterbox before he let them in, when he confessed to having two video cameras and an MP3 player.

Police searched the house and found two memory cards under a bedroom cabinet, one containing images of children and adults on the train.

Mr Laidlaw said: “He said he had bought the cameras from a car boot sale about two weeks before and bought the iPod three months ago.

“He had taken photographs of girls on the Metro system about a week previously.

“He said he might have knocked the memory cards off a bedside table and thought he had hoovered them up.

“He denied having hidden them under the bedside table while the police were at the door.” Hart pleaded guilty to the offence.

Brian Chapman, defending, said no abusive images had been found, and Hart had not taken part in abuse.

He was originally convicted after taking photos of girls walking to school and had a number of convictions for possessing indecent images of children.

District Judge Roger Elsey remanded Hart in custody, to be sentenced at Newcastle Crown Court.

He said: “Any breach of a court order is a serious matter. Breaching a Sopo is a very serious matter, and the offence is aggravated by your substantial list of previous convictions.

“Having regard to the circumstances, it seems to me the sentence that is appropriate is beyond the confines of this court.”

Hart will appear at court in the week of April 14.