AN ACCUSED sex offender who blamed family for indecent images of children found on his computer changed his plea to guilty on the day of his trial.
Dean Vandenhaas, 45, of Lennox Street, Bognor Regis, was jailed for 15 months after admitting making indecent images of children.
He was sentenced at Chichester Crown Court on July 10 after admitting 15 counts of making indecent images of children in categories up to and including the most serious and ten counts of possession of extreme images.
Detective Constable Helen Curtis said: “Right up to the point at which the jury was about to be sworn in, Vandenhaas consistently blamed family and friends for the existence of the thousands of images of abuse found on no less than seven different computer and storage devices at his address.”
Police said Vandenhaas pleaded not guilty to all offences up to the morning of June 1 when his trial was due to start and only at that point changed his plea to guilty.
As well as the prison sentence, he was also served with a sexual harm prevention order to last indefinitely, severely restricting his access to computers and children, and the court made a destruction order for the seven different computers and related items containing illegal material.
Vandenhaas will also be a registered sex offender for ten years on his release.
Police said there was no evidence of any ‘contact’ offending and none of the images were believed to be of local children.
The prosecution followed an intelligence-led investigation by the paedophile on-line investigation team of Sussex Police.
DC Curtis added: “We will always follow up reports about such offenders and anyone with information can contact the police at any time via firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 101.”
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