Leeds & West Yorkshire

Michaela Sheldrake jailed for taking child sex abuse images

Michaela Sheldrake Image copyright West Yorkshire Police
Image caption Michaela Sheldrake admitted a total of nine offences

A woman who described herself as "a monster" after taking hundreds of indecent pictures of a young girl has been jailed for seven years.

Michaela Sheldrake, 41, took pictures of the girl and sent some on to a man, Leeds Crown Court heard.

She admitted nine offences but Judge Sally Cahill told her she had "not shown any proper remorse".

Speaking after the case, a relative said the girl had been "left serving a life sentence".

Sheldrake should be "behind bars for the rest of her life", they added.

Sheldrake, of Norton Grove, Beeston, admitted offences, including two charges of taking a total of 356 indecent photographs of a girl aged under 16.

The court was told three of the photographs were classed as category B and 353 were category C.

Her offences also included two charges of making indecent photographs of a young boy in connection with two images which were classified in category A - the most serious category.

Catherine Silverton, for the defence, said an examination by a forensic psychologist had shown Sheldrake had experienced a "major depressive episode".

She told the court she had described herself as a monster and had tried to take her own life the day before the hearing.

The barrister said: "She took an overdose of all the tablets she could find in her home in the hope she would not wake up and have to come to court to face this today."

Judge Cahill said the impact on the girl had been huge and she had suffered physically, emotionally and educationally.

Det Insp Marc Bowes, of West Yorkshire Police, described the offences as "absolutely appalling" and said Sheldrake's offending was "significant and sustained".

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