Ex-Sea Scout Stephen Smith jailed for child sex crimes

Stephen Smith
Image caption Smith admitted possession of extreme pornography and indecent images of children

A former Nottinghamshire Sea Scout volunteer has been jailed for 10 years after admitting 23 child sex offences.

Stephen Smith, 23 of Bentinck Road, Newark, was told he would remain on the Sex Offenders Register for life and never be allowed to work with children.

Nottinghamshire Police's Det Con Andrew Taylor said Smith had paid £800 to a woman in the Philippines to sexually abuse three young children online.

Smith pleaded guilty and was sentenced at Nottingham Crown Court.

Social networking

He admitted three counts of causing a girl under the age of 13 to engage in sexual activity, three counts of arranging the commission of sex offences on a child, 15 counts of making indecent images of children as well as possession of extreme pornography and more than 400 indecent images of children.

Smith, a former boating instructor at Farndon Sea Scouts, has not worked at the Scout group since his arrest.

A police spokesman said a 14-year-old girl in the UK told them that Smith had been contacting her through social networking sites and asked her to appear on a webcam.

An investigation of Smith's computer revealed he had used social networking sites and chat rooms to contact two other British girls - aged 12 and 13 - as well as the woman in the Philippines.

Det Con Taylor said: "Smith was embarking on a cycle of offending against children, which has now been abruptly halted.

"The 11-month investigation has put great pressure on the shoulders of the young victims, who have been brave enough to speak out against Smith."