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Former school head escapes jail over child porn charges

Hugh Simon Evers

Hugh Simon Evers

A FORMER headmaster from Eastbourne who downloaded images of girls as young as seven being raped has narrowly escaped jail.

Hugh Simon Evers, known as Simon, was given a suspended prison sentence for downloading nearly 400 pictures and videos of underage girls – including children as young as three – being sexually abused.

He has also been banned from working with children.

The 62-year-old, of Meads Street, was arrested after an IT expert he employed to fix his computer found the images on his hard drive in February last year.

As well as storing them on his hard drive, he also printed several pictures and hid them inside a book in his garage.

Some 353 of the images were classed as “level one”, the least serious, while there were also four “level four” videos and two “level four” images – one short of the most serious level, “level five”.

Chichester Crown Court heard on Monday that he downloaded the pictures and several video clips on to his computer between January 2007 and April 2010.

Evers was seen as a pillar of the community in Eastbourne, having served on a panel which chooses local magistrates, carried out voluntary work at the Citizens Advice Bureau in the town, and was a voluntary member of the BBC’s Audience Council for the south-east region, which monitors broadcasting standards.

Sentencing Evers, Judge William Wood said, “Like anyone who has climbed high in a well-respected profession you have many good qualities which stand you in good stead, and result in my having to read the good reports from what people think of the way you have conducted your life, the benefit you have given to your society in various ways as a parent, and husband, and in the course of your profession.

“It’s very sad therefore to find someone who has an obvious care for children to sink to the depths demonstrated by these offences.

“There are large numbers of other graphic indecent images which are shocking to the court, to the public, and to anyone who knows the better qualities which you also have.

“There are, as you know, real victims in this case.

“The children being abused in the videos are the victims.”

After sentencing Detective Constable Barrie Jeapes said, “The successful conviction of the defendant can be seen as a positive result.

“This case was particularly disturbing because it involved a former headmaster possessing indecent images of children aged as young as three or four.

“Not only is he now a convicted sex offender but will be subject to close supervision by Sussex Police and the Probation Service.”

 
 
 

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