Paedophile Police Officer Guilty
15 November 2018, 14:43 | Updated: 15 November 2018, 14:52
Ian Naude, who was working as a student officer at the time of the assault in October 2017, was described during the two-week trial as a "selfish and cruel paedophile" who was obsessed with taking the virginity of teenage girls.
A jury at Liverpool Crown Court found him guilty of rape and sexual assault, as well as four charges of attempting to arrange the commission of a child sex offence and one charge of arranging a child sex offence, relating to five complainants aged between 12 and 15.
The court had been told the 30-year-old, who police believe may have more victims who have yet to come forward, had been acting on an "ever increasing interest in young girls" over the past six or seven years.
He started working for the police in April 2017, despite being named as a suspect in two child grooming cases in neighbouring forces in the months leading up to his appointment, it has now emerged.
Naude, who previously served in Afghanistan as a machine gunner with the Royal Irish Regiment, was warned by Recorder of Liverpool Judge Clement Goldstone QC he faces a "very significant sentence indeed".
Summing up the case, Judge Goldstone said: "The defence concede that this is a case which has fairly depicted the defendant as a cold, uncaring, selfish and cruel paedophile who has on occasion stooped as low as coercive and threatening behaviour, including blackmail of young girls, some of whom have been properly characterised as vulnerable."
Naude admitted having sex with his victim, who he initially met while on duty, but claimed the 13-year-old had consented.
He also admitted two counts of engaging in sexual communication with a child, 14 counts of inciting a child to engage in sexual activity, one count of taking indecent photos of a child, four counts of making indecent photos of a child, six counts of causing a child to watch a sexual act, two counts of misconduct in a public office and one count of possessing indecent photos of a child.
But, he denied that he had attempted to arrange to commit child sex offences, claiming that messages sent to girls asking them to meet were just fantasy.
Naude, originally from South Africa, had been called to a domestic incident at the victim's house in October 2017 and contacted her on Facebook days later.
After exchanging sexual images and messages over social media, he took her out in his car and raped her, the jury heard.
The court was told the father-of-one, based at Crewe police station, would gain the trust of young girls by posing on social media as a 15-year-old boy called Jake Green.
He also had an account under the name of Bruce Ian Wayne, an apparent reference to superhero Batman, and a Snapchat account named King Of The North.
The court heard after the rape was reported Naude was accidentally copied into a police email revealing the plan to arrest him.
When his phone was seized 756 images had been deleted from it.
Other devices, including a laptop and another phone, were later discovered in a field in Market Drayton after he gave a hand-drawn map of their location to his cellmate.
Naude will be sentenced on December 13.