Belfast Telegraph

Belfast man jailed for four months for downloading child porn films

By Ashleigh McDonald

A 31-year-old man who accessed and downloaded child porn over a seven-year period has been jailed for four months.

Sending Francis Emmanuel McClay to prison, Judge Geoffrey Miller spoke of the "very young and vulnerable children" who are degraded, corrupted and exploited in videos such as those found on the Belfast man's laptops.

McClay, from Chobham Street, was handed an eight-month sentence after he admitted 15 offences, including possessing indecent images of children. He will spend four months in prison, followed by four months on licence.

Belfast Crown Court heard yesterday that two laptops belonging to McClay were seized during a planned search of a former address on June 3, 2015.

When asked by officers if he was aware child porn was being accessed from the address, McClay said he "may have seen some stuff by accident".

When the two laptops underwent forensic anaylsis, a total of 163 videos were located, some of which had been saved into folders.

Also found were files associated with fire-sharing software, while the last log-in date from the other computer - which also had child porn saved and stored - was the day before his arrest. McClay's offending spanned from November 2008 until his arrest.

A solicitor representing McClay told the court the offending occurred when he was "in an alcoholic haze" or when under the influence of cannabis.

"He does realise this is morally wrong and disgusting", he said, and also pointed out that after being accessed by a psychiatrist, McClay was not deemed to have a sexual interest in children.

Judge Miller said that he approached the psychiatrist's conclusion "with a degree of caution", adding that from the titles of the videos alone, McClay was well aware of their content, which he downloaded then saved into specific files.

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