Police put 15 Northamptonshire paedophiles behind bars during first three months of 2022

‘Results demonstrate commitment to safeguarding children,’ says detective

Wednesday, 27th April 2022, 11:54 am

Fifteen paedophiles were sentenced during the first three months of 2022 after being tracked down by Northamptonshire Police.

The force Paedophile Online Investigation Team (POLIT) also safeguarded 39 children while executing eight warrants and making 38 arrests between January and March, 2022.

The POLIT sits within the Public Protection Unit and works to brings people who view and distribute indecent images of children, or who groom, incite and facilitate sexual activity with children through use of the internet, to justice.

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Six men convicted or sentenced over child sex offences in Northamptonshire between January and March 2022 — Top row (left to right) Ioan Christian Moise, Matthew Mather-Franks and Matthew Swift; bottom row: Stephen Mitchell, Peter Butt and Keith McFadden

Convictions so far this year have included a 36-year-old man sentenced to six years and one month in prison for charges including two counts of attempting to incite a girl under 13 to engage in sexual activity and seven counts of making indecent images of children.

Another 37-year-old man was jailed for eight years in connection with charges including making indecent images of children and paying for sexual services from a young girl.

And a 69-year-old man was sentenced to five years, seven months for three counts of arranging or facilitating a child sex offence.

Detective Inspector Matt Haworth, said: “Our team proactively seeks out offenders as well as having responsibility for reactive referrals and I hope these results demonstrate the commitment we have to safeguarding children in Northamptonshire.

“We often see drugs warrants publicised in the media but our team also conduct warrants following investigations into an individual’s online activities.

“These warrants lead to arrests, charges, convictions and — most importantly – children being safeguarded and protected from harm.

“Our mission is to protect children from online predators – whether that be convicting offenders for possessing indecent images of children or protecting a child who is being groomed online.

“We will continue working hard and hope to see similarly good results as the year progresses.”

Among others convicted or sentenced so far in 2022:

■ Stephen Mitchell, aged 58, of Northampton, was sentenced to 12 years, eight months after pleading guilty to a number of historic offences including the attempted rape of a child under the age of 14.

■ Keith McFadden, aged 57, formerly of Northampton, was jailed for seven years, ten months after he groomed and sexually assaulted a 14-year-old girl in Northamptonshire hotels.

■ Ioan Christian Moise, aged 29, is due to be sentenced next month after guilty to 12 offences after spending a number of days with a girl in Northampton hotels.

■ Rushden paedophile ring-leader Matthew Mather-Franks, age 37, was jailed for eight years after breaching a sexual harm prevention order by using devices to commit online sexual offences relating to young girls, mainly aged between nine and 12.

■ Peter Butt, aged 72, of Northampton was already serving a suspended sentence when police discovered a stash of hidden phones and a laptop. He pleaded guilty to seven charges and was sentenced to a total of 42 months.

■ Northamptonshire Police caught 36-year-old Matthew Swift, formerly of Bedford, contacting youngsters by posing as a child. He was jailed for more than six years over 13 offences including possessing child pornography and attempting to illicit children for sex.