Sleaford

Disgraced former Lincolnshire councillor jailed after downloading illegal images of children

A former North Kesteven district councillor said to have a “rapacious interest” in downloading pornography has been jailed for two years at Lincoln Crown Court.

Ian Dolby, 52, of North Road, Sleaford, who represented the Quarrington Ward until resigning in April 2014, and was also a member of Sleaford Town Council changed his plea on the second day of his trial and admitted 23 charges of making an indecent image of a child.

He denied 13 further similar charges which were left on the file after the prosecution decided not to pursue them.

The charges arose from a police search of his home in December 2013 as part of police inquiries following the arrest of Dolby’s then lodger over a completely unconnected matter.

The search revealed a stash of over 700 computer disks containing pornography stored in Dolby’s bedroom.

45 of the disks contained child pornography including more than 500 movies lasting 184 hours. The films were downloaded between 2010 and 2013.

As well as being jailed Dolby was placed on the sex offenders’ register for 10 years and given a sexual harm prevention order intended to control his behaviour when released from his sentence.

Judge Simon Hirst told him: “You have done everything you possibly could to avoid facing up to your wrongdoing.

“This type of offending is not victimless in any way. Every still photograph and every frame of a film has the face of a child who has been sexually abused in the most cruel way imaginable.

“In behaving as you did you perpetuated the market and distribution of such images and encouraged the making of more images.”

Mark Knowles, in mitigation, said that around 90 per cent of the material found at Dolby’s home was legitimate adult pornography.

“He is not an individual who deals exclusively in a certain type of material.”

Mr Knowles said Dolby has an obsessive personality.

“He understands that he has a problem. He is desperate to get to the bottom of his difficulties.

“He is very much a loner who spends the majority of his free time in his room on his computer.”

Mr Knowles said that Dolby’s book-keeping business which employs five people may be at risk if he received an immediate jail sentence and he could possibly lose his home.

Martin Hurst, prosecuting, said that police officers who initially went to the Dolby’s home discovered framed photographs of naked young girls on the walls and folders containing photographs of young girls.

As a result CID officers were asked to attend and a detailed search was carried out.

Mr Hurst said: “They searched the whole house. They searched in particular Dolby’s bedroom and took away quite a lot of things principally electronic devices including a laptop.

“Also in his bedroom they found a very, very substantial library of DVD disks.

“These were DVDs he had made at home. He had burned them from websites he had been visiting on the internet.”

“They contained some of the most offensive material that you can imagine. 45 DVDs contained principally or exclusively indecent images of children. The other 687 were dip-tested. There was a vast quantity of adult pornography.

“When asked if there were any indecent images of children on his lap top he said there was a possibility something may have been downloaded accidentally.”

When Dolby was interviewed he said he tried to make sure that the images he viewed were of girls over the age of 18.

Mr Hurst said: “He made it perfectly clear that he has an interest in looking at sexual pictures of young women. He revealed a rapacious interest in downloading pornography. When he sees something he likes he burns it onto a DVD.

“The prosecution say that this man is a paedophile and that is why he has downloaded this and burned it and stored it.”

Dolby is the second former Sleaford Town councillor in three months to be jailed for child pornography offences.

In June Richard Willis, 51, admitted three charges of distributing indecent images of children, two charges of making indecent images of children and a further charge of taking indecent images of children. He was jailed for 16 months at Lincoln Crown Court in June.