Five found guilty in shocking paedophile case

02/11/2011

Melissa Noon, Simon Hilton, Daniel Bell, John Maddox and Mark Day were found guilty today after a six week trial at Portsmouth Crown Court. They will be sentenced on 19 and 20 December at Portsmouth Crown Court

Kerry Maylin, Senior Crown Advocate for the Crown Prosecution Service in Wessex said: "This was a horrific case of systematic child abuse where the defendants subjected children as young as four to atrocious acts of sexual abuse and encouraged others across the world to commit similar offences.

"Melissa Noon, Simon Hilton, Daniel Bell, John Maddox and Mark Day were found guilty today after a six week trial at Portsmouth Crown Court. They were all active participants in an international paedophile ring and communicated with each other via the internet; using chat rooms, websites, email and phone contact. They also used the internet to share images of the abuse they perpetrated and encouraged each other in the commission of these offences.   

"This case came to light following an investigation from the Australian Federal Authorities into a registered sex offender, which revealed there was evidence that offences had taken place in Hampshire.

"Hampshire Constabulary conducted a thorough investigation which led to the arrests of the defendants. The evidence in this case included more than 14,000 indecent images of children and 300 videos and films of children being abused.

"Wessex Crown Prosecution Service worked very closely with the police and criminal justice agencies all over the world to build a very strong case against each of the defendants. This outcome demonstrates the importance of the close working relationships that exist between the CPS and our criminal justice colleagues around the world, in particular the Australian Federal Authorities and those in the USA and Europe. 

 "The Crown Prosecution Service will continue to work with the local police and their international colleagues to bring robust prosecutions and to ensure offenders who commit offences of this kind are brought to justice, children are kept safe and victims supported through all stages of the trial process."