Man who took pictures of himself raping 'vulnerable' girl is jailed

Image source, Getty Images
Image caption,
Wernham was jailed at the High Court in Glasgow

A man who photographed himself raping a vulnerable 13-year-old girl has been jailed for seven and a half years.

David Wernham, of Helensburgh, "sexually exploited" his teenage victim while claiming he was taking her on metal detection outings.

The ex-soldier, 51, pled guilty to rape after police discovered explicit pictures of the abuse, which took place between July 2015 and February 2016.

He will remain on the sex offenders register indefinitely.

Wernham, who also uses the name Collins, was sentenced at the High Court in Glasgow following his earlier guilty plea on rape and indecent images charges.

The teenage victim was described in court as having learning difficulties and was not able to consent to sex.

Wernham originally met her at the charity shop he latterly managed, and lavished gifts on her including toys, teddy bears and trainers.

Distinctive tattoos

After she told a relative of being abused, police raided the Gulf War veteran's home and initially found 311 indecent photos of children.

They then found a folder on his computer containing a further 565 pictures of the victim, including a number depicting Wernham abusing her. He was identified due to his distinctive tattoos.

Lorraine Glancy, defending, said Wernham's relationship with his wife and children had "come to a complete end" due to the offences.

She added: "He appreciates his conduct has had significant consequences not only for the girl, but also on his own family."

Lord Beckett told Wernham that he had "sexually exploited" the girl in crimes which involved "depravity", adding: "There is no alternative to a lengthy prison sentence."

He will be supervised for three years following his release.

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