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Ex-Jersey deputy head jailed for child sex images


image copyrightStates of Jersey Police

image captionJames John Matthews admitted to making 33 indecent images of children

A former primary school deputy head has been jailed after being convicted of making child sex images.

At Jersey’s Magistrates’ Court in May James John Matthews, 42, admitted making 33 indecent images of children.

Matthews, who worked at the island’s St John’s Primary School, also pleaded guilty to sending messages of an obscene and indecent nature in 2016.

He was jailed for two years and nine months at the Royal Court by Deputy Bailiff Robert MacRae.

In December last year police received information about suspected downloads at the offender’s address, the court heard.

When Matthews’ electronic devices were seized, police discovered a sexually explicit message about a seven-year-old sent to a convicted sex offender.

The deputy head was suspended from his role at St John’s Primary School that month.

‘Deplorable desires’

A five-month investigation by the States of Jersey Police pulled in help from the force’s hi-tech crime unit to analyse Matthews’ devices.

A total of 33 indecent images of children were uncovered, prompting Matthews’ to be charged on 11 May, where he has remained in custody since.

Senior investigating officer Det Insp Cathy Davison said the force were committed to prosecuting those “using the dark corners of the internet to satisfy their deplorable desires”.

The force said it did not believe any children at the school were involved in the offences.

Bailiff MacRae told Matthews a longer sentence would have been given if this were the case.

He said: “We take into account as has been independently verified your genuine remorse, profound sense of shame and determination to address your behaviour.

“We give some, but not a great deal of weight, to your previous good character.”

Matthews was also placed on the sex offenders register for seven years.

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