PCSO filmed children in changing rooms and collected child abuse images for 19 years

·Freelance news writer, Yahoo UK
·2 min read
Jailed: James Land. (SWNS)
Jailed: James Land. (SWNS)

A PCSO who filmed children in a swimming pool changing rooms and downloaded hundreds of child abuse images has been jailed for 27 months.

James Land, who was previously part of a specialist team tackling online crime for Derbyshire Police, was found with 1,500 sick images and videos of children.

A court heard how he had filmed children naked in the changing rooms of a swimming pool in Chesterfield, and also hid a teenage girl's underwear under his bed.

Land, 43, was arrested by his own colleague after the force discovered he had been accessing some of the images on a police work laptop in May last year.

Officers searched his home in Cromford, in the Peak District, and seized nine devices, including a personal laptop, mobile phone and external hard drive.

They were found to contain over 1,500 indecent images and videos of children, 369 of them in the most serious category A.

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Derby Crown Court heard he had been collecting the images since 2002.

He pleaded guilty to three counts of making indecent images, one of possessing extreme images, six of voyeurism and one of possession of prohibited images of children.

Land, now of Conwy in Wales, was jailed and made subject of a 10-year sexual harm prevention order.

Sentencing, judge Nirmal Shant QC said: “You quite plainly targeted very young children aged from three to five years old, it was a swimming baths.

"That caused a great deal of distress to their families.

“You were at all times employed by Derbyshire Constabulary as a PCSO – in 2017 you were given a role in cyber crime.

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"You gave safeguarding advice in online safety and it is against this backdrop that you accept that since 2002 until 2021 you have been in possession of indecent images."

Land had resigned from the force in April following his suspension at the beginning of the police investigation.

Dep Ch Cons Kate Meynell said after the case: “There is no place in Derbyshire Constabulary for anyone who commits such serious crimes as this.

“We, like the communities we serve, are shocked and disgusted by Land’s actions.

"He was arrested and suspended at the earliest opportunity and gross misconduct proceedings are continuing now that the criminal case is concluded.

“We will seek to place him on the barred list, which will prevent him from working for other police forces and within other certain professions.”

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