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Mexican Exchange Student Sentenced to 10 Years for Child Sex Offenses in Norwich

Axel Torres-Vargas, a 21-year-old Mexican exchange student and London-based medical student, has been sentenced to 10 years in prison, with an additional five years on the license, for committing seven child sex offences in Norwich. The sentencing took place at Norwich Crown Court on Tuesday, December 19, following Torres-Vargas’s admission of guilt during a previous hearing.

Torres-Vargas pleaded guilty to several charges, including arranging or facilitating the commission of a child sex offence, three counts of distributing indecent photographs of a child, and three counts of making indecent photographs of a child. Additionally, he was given an indefinite Sexual Harm Prevention Order by Norfolk Constabulary.

The Mexican national, who had been residing in the United States, came to London on a short-term student exchange program in June 2023. During his time in London, he engaged in conversations with an individual he believed to be the uncle of a 10-year-old girl, who was, in fact, an undercover police officer using the alias ‘Uncle Jim.’ Their conversations led to the exchange of indecent images, after which Torres-Vargas expressed his intention to travel to Norwich to sexually assault the child.

On June 28, 2023, Torres-Vargas travelled to Norwich Railway Station as agreed upon but was apprehended by the police upon arrival. Subsequent investigations revealed that his electronic devices contained approximately 1,000 indecent images and videos of children, including 300 classified as the most explicit category. Furthermore, communications with unidentified third parties revealed discussions about the sexual abuse of children.

Recorder Michael Turner, during sentencing, described Torres-Vargas as having a “dark side” that was “disgusting and evil,” according to the Eastern Daily Press.

Detective Sergeant Craig Dixon, from the Sexual Offences, Exploitation and Child Abuse Team (SOECAT) at Norfolk Constabulary, emphasized the severity with which these crimes are regarded. He stated, “Torres-Vargas had images and videos of the most disturbing sexual abuse of children stored on his mobile phone. He poses a significant risk of serious sexual harm to children. I hope this sentence sends a message of how seriously these kinds of offences are taken.”

The Norfolk Constabulary Safeguarding Children online team collaborates closely with regional, national, and international partners to combat online child exploitation and protect children from serious sexual abuse.

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