Rugby man tried to persuade under-age girls to send him naked photos online - but was caught out because the 'girls' were decoys

A young Rugby man repeatedly tried to persuade under-age girls he contacted online to send him naked pictures of themselves and to meet him for sex.

Sunday, 22nd December 2019, 2:49 pm
Updated Sunday, 22nd December 2019, 2:50 pm

But unknown to Bradley Taylor, he was never going to get his way – because none of the girls actually existed, and they were just decoy profiles.

He pleaded guilty at Warwick Crown Court to eight charges of attempting to incite girls to engage in sexual activity and one of attempting to engage in sexual communication with a child.

Taylor (23) of South Street, Rugby, escaped being jailed after the judge said it ‘would not be right’ to do so in the light of reports on him.

Bradley Taylor

Instead he was given a two-year community order, with an offending behaviour programme and a rehabilitation activity, and was ordered to register as a sex offender for five years.

Prosecutor Adrian Fleming said: “The counts all concern internet communication with persons he believed to be female children, but were in fact decoys.

“The procedure adopted by all the decoys is a similar one. From the outset the decoy children make the defendant aware of their age, and they don’t encourage sexual communication in any way.

“There is a similarity in his approach, to go straight into sexual demands, and he’s very persistent and domineering, making demands for sexual photographs.”

In January and February last year Taylor communicated with ‘Sarah’ who made it quite clear she was only 14.

But there were immediate explicit requests for her to meet him for sex, and to send him naked pictures, while he sent her pictures of him exposing himself.

In May last year Taylor claimed to be a boy of 13 as he tried to persuade 11-year-old ‘Natasha’ to send him pictures of herself naked.

He then turned his attention to 13-year-old ‘Maddison,’ this time claiming to be 14 as he made a number of requests for her to send him pictures and to meet for sex.

“The decoy repeatedly tried to change the subject and talk about pets, but he always brought it back to sex," said Mr Fleming.

Taylor was then involved in similar exchanges with supposed 13-year-olds called Layla, Danni, Jessie and Grace, 15-year-old Siobhan and 14-year-old Alana.

He was arrested when the police were tipped off following a sting by the people behind the decoys.

But when he was questioned Taylor, who had a previous conviction for a sexual offence after grabbing a woman’s breasts from behind, claimed he had given his Facebook details to someone in Cardiff, who he suggested must have been to blame.

Amy Jackson, defending, conceded there was ‘an element of persistence,’ to the offences, but argued: “This is about as far from sophisticated grooming as you can get.”

She said Taylor had been ‘involved with medical agencies since he was a toddler’ and, having been diagnosed with autism and significant learning difficulties, had difficulty with social interaction.

Referring to a psychiatric report, she said Taylor had been assessed as having a mental age of around 13, and was ‘prone to communicating with people of that chronological age.’

Sentencing Taylor, Judge Sylvia de Bertodano told him: “You were on the internet talking to people you thought were children of 13 or 14, and talking about sex and asking them to perform sex acts and asking them for photographs.

“It is very serious when you do that because children can be very, very badly affected by it.

“Luckily in this case it was not real children, it was adults pretending to be children who caught you out.

“But although you are 23, you are not in any real way functioning as a 23-year-old. There is a detailed psychiatric report which assesses you as having a mental age of 12-14.

“Given your particular circumstances, it would not be right to send you to prison for these matters.”