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  1. ITV Report

Disgraced former Lord Mayor jailed for sex offences

The former Lord Mayor of Leeds, Neil Taggart, has been jailed for 32 months after admitting possessing and distributing indecent images of children on his computer.

Neil Taggart Credit: West Yorkshire Police
Neil Taggart Credit: ITV Yorkshire

The 65-year-old, seen here in 2004, was also the former chairman of the West Yorkshire Police Authority and a Leeds city councillor for more than 30 years. He pleaded guilty to eight offences.

Leeds Crown Court was told Taggart downloaded thousands of images, many involving extreme pornography.

Offenders like Taggart, who seek out and distribute abusive images of children for the sexual gratification of themselves and others, play a significant role in the continuation of the appalling real-life abuse that these images capture."The crimes he pleaded guilty to represent a high volume of images - many of the most serious kind - and cover a significant period of time."As someone who held a number of high-profile public positions during some of that time, he would have been well aware of how wrong his offending behaviour was and how it was completely against the standards of integrity and decency that the public would have rightly expected of him."We hope that seeing him brought to justice will reassure the public that we treat all offences of this nature seriously and will continue to do everything we can to safeguard children."

– Detective Superintendent Pat Twiggs

Calendar's David Hirst was in Leeds Crown Court today when Taggart admitted eight offences - and was told his reputation has been destroyed.