The top stories in Dorset, Hampshire, West Sussex and the Isle of Wight.
Ex-World Karate Champ Jailed
50 year old Timothy Stephens from Poole has been given 30 months in prison after pleading guilty to sexual offences against children.
The former world karate champion, who had been teaching karate in Poole for almost 20 years, was sentenced on Monday 30 April at Bournemouth Crown Court after pleading guilty to 43 counts of sexual offences at Bournemouth Crown Court on February 28th.
Following the sentence, Julia Woodward, Senior Crown Prosecutor for CPS Wessex said:
“Timothy Stephens’ criminal acts are extensive.
“He was well known in the community for being the local karate teacher who had been three times world champion, and there is no doubt that he used this local fame to gain the confidence of many.
“From outside appearances, Stephens seemed entirely respectable and would probably not have raised any suspicions. However, the
painstaking investigation led by Dorset Police revealed that the situation behind closed doors was very different. In his house, not only were there the expected old trophies and karate belts but also a number of rooms were filled from floor to ceiling with DVDs, computer hard disks and computers with pornographic material.
“Some of the material found included evidence that he was both taking and making indecent images of children. Equipment found at his house, including a telescope and a pair of glasses with a camera built-in, gave a good indication of the techniques that he had used to take indecent images of children and to commit offences of voyeurism.
“This case was dealt with by our Rape and Serious Sexual Offences (RASSO) Unit. At a hearing in February 2012, pleas were entered to 43 offences, one charge alone relating to the possession of more than 37,000 indecent images of children.
“This case demonstrates clearly the dedication that Dorset Police and CPS Wessex RASSO Unit have when dealing with rape and sexual
offences. We would like to thank all the victims in this case who came forward and were keen to support this prosecution.”
Police are still searching for 25-year-old Samantha Henderson, who's been missing since Wednesday.
37 people have been jailed for a combined 70 years after the first year.
They've been named the fifth and sixth best towns and cities in the country, in a new report.
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