Surrey

Upskirting Surrey pensioner put on sex offenders' register

woman in skirt Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Upskirting involves the taking of covert pictures or videos underneath a victim's clothing

A pensioner has been put on the sex offenders' register after taking photos up a woman's dress while on a train.

John Richardson, 72, from Shepperton in Surrey was on a train to London Waterloo when he took the images, Westminster Magistrates' Court heard.

He struck up a conversation with the victim who at one point "noticed he was using his mobile phone by his knees".

Richardson was given a 12-month community order and will be put on the sex offenders' register for five years.

Melanie Hardwick for the prosecution, said the victim had "noticed [Richardson] was using his mobile phone, by his knees with the camera pointed to the lower part of her body" while on the train journey last September.

Richardson's phone camera flashed, and he "was zooming in and out of something, judging by the movement of his fingers", the victim said.

'Degrading and demeaning'

Ms Hardwick said the victim was left "feeling very uncomfortable, confused, and vulnerable", after Richardson took the "three to four pictures of her legs", with her underwear also faintly visible.

When Richardson, of Russell Road in Shepperton, approached the woman at the station, he attempted to apologise, and said: "I'm sorry, but I thought you were really attractive."

He also later expressed regret and embarrassment when he was spoken to by police, the court heard.

Paul Gilmartin, for the defence, said: "He never meant to upset her. He repeatedly tried to apologise at the scene."

Sentencing Richardson, District Judge Samuel Mark Goozee said the incident had been "covert, intrusive, and degrading".

"It has been degrading and demeaning for [the victim]."

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