Man jailed for grooming - Halifax and Luton


A man, who travelled 170 miles from Halifax to Luton expecting to meet a 13-year-old girl was today, Thursday, 20 October 2016, jailed for 2 years and 8 months.

John Hanson, aged 55, had booked a hotel, but when he arrived at Luton railway station he was confronted by Katie and Neil Ivall who target paedophiles after one of their relatives was groomed on line. They called the police and he was arrested, Luton Crown Court heard.

Hanson, of Shaw Lodge, Shaw Hill, Halifax, appeared for sentence having pleaded guilty to attempting to meet a child following sexual grooming.

Michael Speak, prosecuting for Thames and Chiltern Crown Prosecution Service (CPS), said Mrs Ivall set up the fake Facebook account in the name of Jessica Walters, stating she was just 13-years-old.

Hanson began grooming her over Facebook on 10 July.

"He booked a hotel room for Saturday, 16 July telling the girl it cost him £120. He made it clear they would have sexual activity and he wanted her to call him Dad," said Mr Speak.

Hanson had also asked the hotel if his daughter could join him overnight in the room.

Defending, Stefan Weidmann said: "He is grappling with what he has done. For some years the defendant has struggled with depression and drink. Although he has abstained from drink since his arrest. Since his arrest he has been isolated from his family. His brother has brought him to court and is the only one standing by him. Understandably, his children have turned their backs on him. He has lost absolutely everything, but is the author of his own misfortune."

Jailing him, Judge Michael Kay QC said: "You had a well planned operation to take a 13-year-old girl to a hotel to have sexual activity." He said Hanson must register as sex offender and abide by the terms of a sexual harm prevention order indefinitely.

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