Online Groomer Who Posed as 12-Year-Old Girl to Target Boys Jailed

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Home Breaking Online Groomer Who Posed as 12-Year-Old Girl to Target Boys Jailed

Online Groomer Who Posed as 12-Year-Old Girl to Target Boys Jailed

Ben Thompson from Bolton has been sentenced to four years in jail after pleading guilty to a series of disturbing crimes. Thompson posed as a teenage girl online to exploit young boys, engaging in sexual conversations and coercing them into sharing explicit images and videos. His actions have left a lasting impact on the victims and their mental health.

Online Groomer Who Posed As 12-year-old Girl To Target Boys Jailed

The Investigation

Our specialist Child Protection Investigation Unit in Bolton uncovered Thompson’s sinister activities. Using the alias ‘Erinstewart788,’ he pretended to be a young girl named Erin to build rapport with teenage boys. Once he gained their trust, he demanded sexually explicit content from them.

Swift Action

In June 2020, the parents of an eleven-year-old boy reported online grooming to the police. Immediate safeguarding measures were implemented, and an investigation commenced. Through extensive digital inquiries, we identified Thompson as the perpetrator behind the fake account.

Uncovering the Extent

On 12 November 2020, police executed a warrant at Thompson’s home address in Lostock, Bolton. His mobile devices contained over two million images, including more than one thousand indecent images and videos he had coerced from children. Enquiries revealed sexualised messages exchanged with underage boys across Manchester, the South West, and the North East of England.

Justice Served

Despite Thompson’s refusal to comment during interviews, our officers persevered. Following a lengthy and complex investigation, he has now been convicted and sentenced. Detective Sergeant Matt Quayle from Bolton’s Child Protection Investigation Unit praised the victims and survivors for their courage in coming forward. He urged anyone affected by this case or suspicious of their child being targeted by a similar social media account to report it promptly.

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