Spared jail: Child-porn Pervert from Hyde who was Scout Leader, Foster Dad and Social Worker (Copied from Tameside Advertiser)

Article Copied from Tameside Advertiser (22/08/2012)

A social worker who was also a foster parent and Scout leader has been shamed after his sick collection of child abuse images was discovered.

Dad-of-three John McKenna worked with children for most of his adult life and was a pillar of the community.

But a police investigation found McKenna, 58, had images of children as young as eight being abused on his computer. He worked as a children’s social worker for Tameside and Stockport councils for three decades.

Until his sick habit was exposed, he also fostered children at his home in Hyde and was Group Scout Leader of the 3rd Gee Cross troop.

Locked up in August ’12

A Manchester Crown Court sentencing hearing was told that McKenna, of Hepworth Street, Hyde, had claimed to have been researching child abuse when his wife confronted him about his internet use five years ago.

Justin Hayhoe, prosecuting, described how his wife had come home to find McKenna asleep in front of a laptop, which had the word ‘sexual’ on it, and had asked him what he had been up to. But in February this year, McKenna’s lies unravelled when police came knocking at his door, tipped off by the Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre.

The centre had concerns about images being uploaded onto Microsoft’s Skydrive website, which allows users to store content online rather than on hard drives.

Searches of McKenna’s home led to the discovery of 484 indecent images of children. The majority were of the least serious category, but more than 100 depicted children being abused.

McKenna, who is wheelchair-bound by mobility problems, has now been sentenced to a three-year community order with a requirement to attend a sex offenders’ treatment programme, after admitting 47 counts of downloading indecent images of children. He is barred from working or having unsupervised contact with children and his internet use is restricted by a sexual offences prevention order.

McKenna spent six months behind bars as a remand prisoner and was sentenced via videolink to Strangeways. He sobbed and sighed throughout the hearing.

Stella Massey, defending, said: “This is a man who is now 58 years of age. He has no previous convictions whatsoever, lived for many years with his wife and worked as a foster carer for many years, and now finds himself having lost his good character and most of what he has worked for and built up over many years.”

Sentencing, Judge Robert Atherton said that for many years McKenna had worked for the benefit of the community, but had committed a crime which deserved a jail sentence – but took into account his time on remand.

Explaining why he was not sentencing McKenna to jail, the judge said: “If I impose that sentence of imprisonment now you will not receive any substantial assistance in overcoming the problems which these images show you have.”

 

Article from http://menmedia.co.uk/tamesideadvertiser/news/crime/s/1586795_spared-jail-child-porn-pervert-from-hyde-who-was-scout-leader-foster-dad-and-social-worker

 

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