Belfast Telegraph

Former top prison warder found with child porn stash avoids jail

BY MICK BROWNE

A former top prison officer who admitted possessing more than 2,000 indecent images of girls aged 10-16 on two computers has walked free after being put on probation for three years.

Craigavon Crown Court, sitting in Belfast, heard how former principal prison officer William Moore (62), of Bellevue Drive, Lisburn, had previously received a community services medal, but was arrested last August when police uncovered the child pornography.

Prosecuting lawyer Ian Tannahill told the court how the offences came to light after an intelligence-led police search of Moore's home in 2008, during which police seized two computers. Moore admitted the existence of the images, including movies, to police at the scene, with 118 images on one machine and 1,929 on the second computer.

Mr Tannahill said although Moore had not viewed them since 2008, and had in fact deleted them at that time, an examination of the computers revealed that a "large number" of the images had been in the level one category, with some in levels three and four.

Imposing the three-year probation programme, Judge Gemma Loughran said she accepted Moore had not viewed the material since 2008 and that he had admitted his actions to police when they came to his home, later pleaded guilty to 17 offences of possessing indecent images of children on dates between December 22, 2007 and August 24 last year.

Moore also "remains deeply embarrassed by his actions", the judge told the court. Fining Moore £2,000 for possession of the images, to be paid over 20 weeks, the judge said: "You should pay back to the community in some way for what you have taken out, in the broadest sense."

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