May 21 2013 Latest news:
Monday, January 28, 2013
A former Met Police constable in the diplomatic protection squad has been given a three-year community order after he admitted making indecent images of children.
Christopher Exley, 33, who was based at Charing Cross Police Station in central London and who guarded members of Parliament, was ordered to enrol on an internet sex offenders programme for three years at a sentencing hearing in Southwark Crown Court today.
Judge Anthony Leonard QC also ordered Exley to attend supervision with police over 18 months, to observe a curfew between 8pm and 6am and to wear an electronic tag.
The orders were made after Exley admitted at a hearing in December to three counts of making an indecent image of a child under the age of 18, at levels respectively of one, two and four.
And he also pleaded guilty to a count of making 53 indecent images of a child under 18, 27 at level one, 15 at level two and 11 at level four. Level four images are categorised as penetrative sexual activity involving a child or children, or both children and adults.
Gino Connor, prosecuting at the earlier hearing, said the individual counts were samples of images at level one, two and four, while the count with the 53 images represented the totality.
Addressing Exley, Judge Leonard said the offences were “serious” but he had taken into account “special” circumstances in the case.
He said: “Most of the images that were downloaded were only in the form of thumbnails and you did not go further to download the full pictures.
“They were downloaded or accessed at four separate accounts only, I took that into account.
“I also took into account the deletion of the vast majority of the images, leaving, I think, only five out of what was in effect 49 images, if one takes out the repetition.”
He added: “I take into account your previous good character and the material that I have read on you.
“You get no special treatment as a result of having been a police officer.”
Nicholas Yeo, defending, said Exley, who had been a police officer since 2002, had been summarily dismissed from the force following his guilty pleas.
He said that at “no stage” had Exley distributed or shown any of the images. He added that the former police officer had been a “respected and trusted” police officer who had worked protecting MPs in his role in the diplomatic protection squad.