A karate coach in Newcastle has been sentenced after being caught with more than 100 indecent images.
Jordan McCarthy-Simmonette was arrested in October 2019 after detectives received information the 24-year-old had been talking to someone he believed was a 14-year-old boy online.
However, he was actually in contact with a registered sex offender, who was the subject of a separate ongoing police investigation.
A tablet and mobile phone were seized from his home following his arrest and officers found 109 Category C images stored on the devices.
McCarthy-Simmonnette was charged with attempted sexual communication with a child and possession of indecent images of children.
Following his arrest, the 24-year-old was removed from his role as coach and appropriate measures were put in place.
McCarthy-Simmonette, from Heaton, appeared at Newcastle Crown Court on Wednesday (20 April) where he was sentenced to 10 months in prison, suspended for two years, after previously pleading guilty.
He was also given a Sexual Harm Prevention Order for seven years and placed on the Sex Offenders’ Register for 10 years.
Speaking after the sentencing, Detective Constable Rob Smoult from Northumbria Police's Paedophile Online Investigation Team said: "As a Force we are committed to keeping children and young people safe from harmful and dangerous online predators.
"In this case, McCarthy-Simmonette believed he was engaging with a 14-year-old boy and was unfazed by this. That behaviour is completely unacceptable.
"Thanks to a thorough investigation, a solid case was presented before the courts and McCarthy-Simmonette was left with little opportunity to deny his actions and I am pleased he has admitted his guilt.
"We know that cases like this can cause concern in our communities, but I want to reassure people that we are constantly working with our partners in the local authority and across a wide range of services to ensure the right measures and appropriate safeguards are in place to keep children and young people safe from harm.
"We will continue to work with schools, youth groups and parents to highlight the dangers which can be present across different platforms and would encourage adults to keep talking to their children about who they engaging with, and to keep promoting the use of privacy settings.”
Anyone who thinks they have been a victim, or has information about this type of offending, is urged to get in touch with police.