A farm worker sent highly sexualised Facebook messages to someone he thought was a 12-year-old girl.
Rhys George told what he thought was a child that she was “fit” and “sexy”, and described the sex acts he wanted to do her including “ride her like a horse”.
In fact George was talking to an adult who had set up the social media account as a decoy to try to trap paedophiles.
Swansea Crown Court heard that on September 28, 2019, George contacted a Facebook profile purporting to be that of a 12-year-old girl called Kayleigh.
Craig Jones, prosecuting, said that within the first half-a-dozen messages exchanged between the parties “Kayleigh” made her age clear to the defendant. However George began asking her whether she had a boyfriend, told her she was sexy, and asked her to send photographs.
The court heard that over the following weeks a large number of messages were sent back and forth, and though not all of the conversations were sexual in nature there was a “sexualised theme” to much of it.
The prosecutor said during the exchanges George told the girl he wanted to “ride her like a horse”, and then described in detail the sexual acts he wanted to perform on the girl, and what he wanted her to do him. The pair also discussed meeting, and George sent the decoy videos of himself masturbating.
The conversations came to an end on October 15 when members of a so-called paedophile hunter group travelled to Pembrokeshire to confront George.
George, aged 22, of Bwlchygroes, Crymych, Pembrokeshire, had previously pleaded guilty to attempting to incident a child under 13 to engage in sexual activity, attempting to cause a child under 13 to watch a sexual act, and attempting to engage in sexual communication with a child under 13 when he appeared in the dock for sentencing. He has no previous convictions.
Check what crimes have been reported in your area:
Dyfed Thomas, for George, said the defendant had learning difficulties – a fact the group who confronted him “did not know about… and neither did they care”.
He said while much of the conversation between his client and the person operating the decoy Facebook account had not been of a sexual nature, it was accepted the defendant had an “unhealthy interest in talking to and sharing pictures with children”.
The barrister said given George’s immaturity – he had been 20 at the time of the offending – his co-operation with police, the 18 month delay in the case falling to be sentenced, and the realistic prospect of rehabilitation he invited the court to suspend the prison sentence that was due.
Recorder Ifan Wyn Lloyd Jones told George he should be thoroughly ashamed of his actions, and of the shame he had brought upon his family. He said he had no doubt that the offending was so serious only a term of immediate imprisonment was appropriate.
Giving the defendant a one-third discount for his guilty pleas the recorder sentence him to 28 months in prison. George will serve up to half that period in custody before being released on licence under the UK government’s early release scheme to serve the remainder in the community. He was also made the subject of a sexual harm prevention order for the next 10 years, and will be a registered sex offender for the same length of time.