Sunderland sex offender travelled to Poland without telling police and used alias names on dating and gaming websites

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A sex offender who travelled abroad without notifying the authorities has kept his freedom.

Frank Smith is on the sex offenders register for life and has to abide by strict regulations in his day to day living.

Newcastle Crown Court heard the 37-year-old must notify the police if he intends to travel away from home.

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But in late 2020, Smith made a visit to Poland, which he did not declare.

The case was heard at Newcastle Crown Court.The case was heard at Newcastle Crown Court.
The case was heard at Newcastle Crown Court.

When questioned, Smith admitted he had taken the trip and he had also used alias names online, including on dating and gaming websites and taken out a bank account that the police did not know about.

Smith, of High Street East, Sunderland, admitted breach of notification requirements.

The court heard Smith was ordered to sign the sex offenders register indefinitely in 2012, when he was jailed for three years for making indecentphotographs of children, meeting a child under 16 after grooming and sexual activity with a child.

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In November 2016 he was convicted of distributing indecent and pseudo images of children and jailed for 32 months.

He has a previous conviction and previous caution for failing to comply with notification requirements.

Mr Recorder Richard Wright QC sentenced Smith to a community order for 18 months with rehabilitation requirements, telling him: "You deliberately ignored the requirements, used alias names on online websites including dating and gaming websites and travelled toPoland without notifying the police.

"These were serious breaches."

The judge said the community sentence with rehabilitation was "in the best interests of the public, to seek to protect them in a a constructive way".

The court heard Smith co-operated fully with police when questioned.