One of Cambridgeshire's oddest traditions gets under way this morning...
Bedford Babysitter Who Abused Children Jailed
A depraved Bedford babysitter who sexually assaulted young children he was supposed to be looking after for their parents has been jailed for 18 years.
Clint Gilbert was looked on a trusted friend, a court was told.
But he betrayed the trust of the parents by carrying out sickening sex assaults on their children and even photographing what he was doing.
Gilbert, 21 from Bedford committed offences on seven young boys and girls.
One of his victims was a baby girl aged just three months who he photographed as he assaulted her with own dummy and even a cotton bud.
Today (weds) at Luton crown court Judge Barbara Mensah told him "The offences were so gross, so sickening, disgusting and revolting that only a custodial sentence can be justified in this case."
She told him his behaviour had been "depraved" and that what he had done amounted to a gross breach of trust.
The judge said in some cases the parents of the victims had known Gilbert all his life. One mum had even attended 21st birthday party.
The judge said even if it wasn't yet possible to determine the psychological impact on the children, the impact on thr parents was immense.
Now, she said some parents were faced with the appaling dillema of whether they should tell their child what had happened when they were very young, or say nothing.
The judge said the parents feared that by saying nothing and then the matters coming to light years later, terrible problems could arise between children and their parents.
Gilbert of Collie Road in Bedford pleaded guilty today to three offences of sexual assault on a child under 13 by penetration, six offences of sexual assault of a child under 13, taking indecent photos of a child, making indecent images of a child, distributing indecent photos of a child, possessing extreme pornography and publishing an obscene article.
Michael Speak prosecuting said Gilbert's activities came to light in March of this year after someone with the user name of Clintyboy 93 had been using Skype to speak to a man in the USA discussing child sex and referring to his baby sitting youngsters
It was discovered here in the UK Clintyboy 93 had sent images across to the the person in the USA.
The prosecutor said eventually police were able to establish Clintyboy 93 was infact the defendant and officers turned up at his home in Bedford to arrest him and seize his mobile phones and laptop computer.
They discovered he had downloaded depraved still and video clips from the Internet of young boys and girls being sexually abused by adults.
But they were also to discover from examining his laptop that he had photographed youngsters himself as he sexually assaulted them.
The children ranged from tiny babies to five year olds.
Some had been interfered with while they slept.
It was then said Mr Speak that the police discovered Gilbert had been regularly babysitting for his families in Bedford and it was then decided to see if parents were able to identify their children from some of the close up images discovered on the lap top.
The court was told that some of the parents contacted were able to say from looking at the images that they had been taken in their homes because they recognised certain items that could be seen.
The Skype communications were also still available for police to examine in which sick Gilbert spoke of the enjoyment he derived from abusing the youngsters.
When Gilbert was sentenced today the public gallery in the court was filled with parents and families of the children he had abused.
Gilbert's name will now go on the sex offenders register and he was also made the subject of a sexual harm prevention order.
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