Ex-campsite boss Timothy Lovatt jailed over child images
A former Lake District campsite manager has been jailed for possessing "truly shocking" indecent images of children.
Timothy Lovatt, 57, downloaded thousands of illegal still and moving images, some showing the sexual abuse of children, including babies.
Lovatt, of West End Road, Morecambe, admitted six charges at Carlisle Crown Court, including downloading and distributing illicit images.
Judge Peter Hughes sentenced the former Windermere camp manager to three years.
The court was told that police seized Lovatt's computer equipment from his home after a tip-off.
They found more than 5,000 file names which indicated that images had been shared across the internet between October 2015 and December 2016.
"Disturbing" online chat room conversations were also discovered, which suggested Lovatt had contacted and even met "like-minded" others with an interest in viewing images of sexual activity of children "of the very lowest age range".
The court heard Lovatt made full admissions to police, confessing that any naked child aroused him.
Lovatt, a former Royal Navy petty officer, was said to be remorseful and seeking help.
But jailing Lovatt, Judge Hughes called his crimes "truly shocking".
He added: "It is only a sick and depraved mind that could obtain any pleasure from such material."
Det Con Ryan Parker, of Cumbria Police's digital media investigation unit, said: "Some of the most disturbing images of abuse that our officers have ever come across were discovered on Lovatt's devices.
"Lovatt was proactive in his approach to distributing sickening images to other people online. His distressing chat history and behaviour depicts him as one of the more dangerous online predators."