Loner had 15,000 indecent images of children in his bedroom in Sheffield

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A loner who rarely left his bedroom and ’immersed himself in a variety of fantasy worlds’ was found with over 15,000 indecent images of children.

Jack Steele, aged 22, was caught when police officers visited his home on Birley Spa Lane, Hackenthorpe, for ‘unrelated matters’ and found computers, memory sticks and hard copies of images.

Sheffield Crown Court heard he was a ‘loner’ who had never had a relationship and spent most of his time in his room.

He claimed that indecent images of children first ‘appeared’ on his computer screen when he was watching porn and he was ‘intrigued and downloaded them’.

He admitted he ‘knew it was wrong’.

Prosecutor Neil Coxon said Steele had been ‘adamant he would not act on the images and films and would not commit offences on children in real life’.

Kath Goddard, representing Steele, said: “He is an incredibly isolated and insular young man who for 10 years has barely existed in the real world.”

He said he ‘immersed himself in a variety of fantasy worlds which began with video games and progressed to accessing the internet and pornographic images.”

Steele admitted making 15,000 indecent photos of children, possessing prohibited images of children, possessing extreme pornographic images and possessing indecent photos of children.

Judge Sarah Wright sentenced him to a three year community order with supervision and a requirement to attend a specialist programme.

She said it would be ‘onerous and challenging’ but he needed help to address his issues which would not be available on release into the community after serving time behind bars.