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Ex-seaman Anthony Joy spared jail over child abuse and bestiality images

By Danny Boyle

Maidstone crown court

Anthony Joy was spared jail at Maidstone Crown Court

by Keith Hunt

A pensioner who downloaded child sex abuse and bestiality images from the internet has avoided prison.

Anthony Joy, of Lordswood Lane, Chatham, was sentenced to a three-year community order with supervision.

The former Merchant Navy seaman admitted accessing 161 images of child sex abuse, 10 of which were at the second highest level of four, and 73 extreme pornography images - some involving sex with a dog.

A judge told Joy: "If this had not been you, aged 65, with no previous convictions recorded against you, with a good work record and an upstanding member of the community in other respects, it would have been custody today.

"However, it does not seem to be in the public interest to send you into custody for a short period of time with no work done without trying to get to the bottom of your behaviour and guard against a repetition in future."

Edmund Fowler, prosecuting, said Joy was arrested after police received information that his internet address was being used on a website posted in Croatia in 2010.

"he knows if he goes anywhere near a computer with access to the internet he is on notice to behave, to put it bluntly…” – judge michael carroll

Joy, he said, was spending much of his time in Spain and was not arrested until November last year.

He told officers: "I was expecting this anyway."

Judge Michael Carroll said the probation service had stated worthwhile work could be done with Joy to curb such activity, which "did not seem to be particularly entrenched".

"It does not seem in my view to be in the public interest that he should go to prison today," he said. "That remains open if the community order fails. It will only fail if he lets it fail. He is a man of mature years and he knows the consequences.

"He knows if he goes anywhere near a computer with access to the internet he is on notice to behave, to put it bluntly."

The judge said he regarded the child abuse images as more serious than the animal pornography.

"That is not to overlook the serious nature of the extreme pornography," he continued. "Even where adults are involved in that kind of activity, there is often coercion. It is often that such person voluntarily participate in such filth.

"As far as children are concerned, there can be no question of consent."

Joy was placed on the sex offenders' register for five years.

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