Published: 12:15, 02 May 2013
Detectives raided the home of a Ramsgate man and discovered his sick collection of child sex images... eight million of them!
It is believed to be one of the biggest hauls of vile pictures and movies which have ever been seized from one collector.
But the man responsible for downloading what a judge described as “ghastly, vile, foul, humiliating and degrading” images from the internet has escaped an immediate jail sentence.
Jobless Daryll Taylor said the eight million-strong collection had been amassed during the past 12 years – beginning when he was just 12 years old.
Canterbury Crown Court heard that part of his problem was an obsession with collecting.. which had been brought on by a diagnosed condition of Asperger's Syndrome.
But Deputy Circuit Judge Andrew Patience QC said: “I don’t mean to be flippant but compulsive collectors can collect stamps, milk bottle tops or match boxes.. but this material is being produced by beasts because they know there is a market for it!”
Prosecutor John O’Higgins said that in November 2011 police had raided Taylor’s home in Holbrook Drive where he lived with his parents.
He said officers from the Child Exploitation Investigations Unit had been alerted that someone living there had been downloading many images of children.
“The door was opened by the defendant’s step-father who was there with Taylor’s mother who told them: ‘There must be some mistake’.
“Police then spoke to Taylor and told him they were investigating an offence relating to downloading illegal images..who replied: ‘Where’s the victims?’
“He then told them he developed an interest in child sex images when he was younger ‘ and it didn’t go away’, “ he added.
Mr O’Higgins said a quantity of computer equipment was seized and an examination revealed they contained more than eight million images – which had been “sorted and organised”.
Taylor pleaded guilty to 22 specimen charges of illegally downloading child sex images from the lowest level to the highest Level Five.
Mr O’Higgins said that some of them involved photographs of children as young as five years old depicting sex with animals – another was a 16-minute video of a child, aged between nine and 10, being blindfolded and subjected to a sex attack involving adults and animals.
He added: “They were images showing depravity of the highest order.”
Simon Taylor, defending, said the defendant was a “man of previous good character” but the judge retorted: “Technically that’s correct but according to what he has said he appears to have been behaving this way for 12 years – because it had gone undiscovered which seems to be how he acquired some eight million images.
“He hasn’t gathered previous convictions because he wasn’t caught. That’s not the same thing.”
Mr Taylor said the syndrome had resulted in him showing “an astonishing lack of empathy” but one of the symptoms of the illness was a lack of empathy by sufferers.
“He is a young man with troubles who also suffers from depression. This is not an individual who is functioning fully in society.”
He said that Taylor had spent hours in the bedroom of his home on the computer – rarely going out.
The barrister said that one other aspect of the illness was manifested in a compulsion to collect or accrue “which may explain the huge amount of images downloaded and collected.”
But the judge said: “What troubles me is that he clearly knew right from wrong but proceeded to behave this way. There is a deliberation in his conduct.
“This man hasn’t any employment and spends his time on computers, maybe watching films.
"If he was out of the house doing something useful he wouldn’t spend so much time on his computer and commit offences like this. What we need in effect is a reverse curfew!”
Taylor was given a 12 month jail sentence suspended for two years, ordered to undertake a course to tackle his sex offending and attend 10 sessions to help him get a job.
The judge told him: “These children were subjected to wicked activities causing them terror and psychological damage.
“I have grave doubts about suspending your prison sentence especially as I have those children in my mind’s eye as I speak.”
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