Primary school cleaner from Belfast faces paedophile manual charges
A primary school cleaner who allegedly had thousands of indecent images and videos of children is the first person in Northern Ireland to be prosecuted for having a paedophile manual, his solicitor has claimed.
At Newtownards Magistrates Court, Gary Carruthers (34) was charged with having two manuals, one giving instructions on how to groom and abuse a child and the other entitled 'Producing Kiddie Porn for Dummies'.
Previous courts have heard claims that amongst the thousands of still and moving images uncovered by officers from the National Crime Agency (NCA) were images in which children's faces had been superimposed onto pornographic images.
Carruthers, from Victoria Street in Belfast, is in custody accused of 20 counts of making indecent images of children, two of having paedophile manuals, three offences of having prohibited images of children and a further three counts of possessing extreme pornography.
They are alleged to have occurred between July 31, 2012 and September 16 last year.
The charges arise after NCA officers uncovered 30 storage devices hidden in a safe in his bedroom along with the 180-page paedophile handbook. It is claimed the manual was a guide on "how to approach a child" and gave detailed steps on how to groom a child, from the first introduction to full physical abuse.
In court yesterday, defence solicitor John Finucane said it was the first time the charge of having such a manual had been laid against anyone in Northern Ireland, adding that it would be "a fairly complex case when it appears in the Crown Court".
Carruthers was remanded in custody to appear before Downpatrick Crown Court on September 1.