A child sex offender who had previously been jailed has been put back behind bars after he breached a prevention order by having regular contact with children for over three years.
Derby Crown Court heard on September 5 how Iain Wolstenholme, 46, of Tideswell, was exposed after a Peak District family and their children had unwittingly befriended the defendant and had socialised with him.
Wolstenholme had previously been jailed in 2010 at Oxford Crown Court for five years for eight matters of indecent assault and one of gross indecency against children and he was made subject to an indefinite Sexual Offences Prevention Order banning him from contact with youngsters.
But prosecuting barrister Sarah Allen said “The defendant started to help the family with things like IT problems and explained he worked nights in an IT capacity for a firm in Manchester and they gave him a certain amount of freedom and on one occasion he was given a key to the house.”
The family estimated that they had dealings with Wolstenholme over three years and the defendant had been in their house and garden in the presence of children on about 50 or 60 occasions.
They had considered the defendant as a “friend” and he had been trusted and Wolstenholme even hosted a Halloween get-together and presented the youngsters with sweets and had alcohol for the adults.
Ms Allen added that the defendant had also spent time with the family during a garden party and on another occasion he had shown one of the family’s children and the youngster’s friend his vegetable patch.
However, Miss Allen stressed that following this visit the defendant had asked the family not to send any of the children to his home unaccompanied by an adult.
The court also heard Wolsltenholme had been at a barbecue with the children and other youngsters and he had offered to make marshmallow biscuits and during another time he had given one of the family’s children an iPhone.
But Miss Allen said the family became suspicious when they spotted a parcel for the defendant which was falsely addressed to a Dr Wolstenholme and the family made enquiries and a friend alerted them to Wolstenholme’s background.
Derbyshire police had visited Wolstenholme in April, 2019, but he had failed to disclose that he had been having contact with this family and their children.
Miss Allen stated the family had felt let down by the authorities for not monitoring or alerting others to Wolstenholme’s background.
Wolstenholme pleaded guilty to breaching a SOPO between January 2016 and May 2019 by having contact with children aged under 16.
Defence barrister Patrick Williamson said: “There was a substantial period of compliance after the defendant’s release from prison and prior to him moving to Tideswell.
“He moved to Tideswell to be close to his mother who is not in the best of health.”
Mr Williamson added that the defendant had not sought out the family and children or initiated most of the contact and he had even told the family it would be better if the children were accompanied when they visited.
Wolstenholme has also been subjected to threats and insults, according to Mr Williamson, by other people over Facebook including comments that he should have been aborted at birth and he should be hung, drawn and quartered.
Mr Williamson added that a balance needs to be struck in such cases where there are disclosures about defendants but where people should not behave in a hostile way.
Details on Facebook also included the defendant’s name, address and a photo of his car, according to Mr Williamson who stressed that the defendant intends to move from the area and has no intention of moving back.
Social media coverage has been reported to police who had safe-guarding concerns and Judge Ebraham Mooncey stressed that such coverage was a potential offence and warned those responsible for certain accounts should take these comments down.
Judge Mooncey also shared concerns that Wolstenholme’s address was not visited and monitored more thoroughly by the authorities and this is something that should be examined.
He told Wolstenholme: “These orders are there for a reason and any breach should be regarded as a matter of great concern and a deterrent sentence is needed.”
Judge Mooncey sentenced Wolstenholme to nine months of custody.
He also told the family involved that he understood it must have been a “terrible period” of their lives and stressed there are kind people and he hoped this experience would not put them off others.
Wolstenholme was also given a ten-year restraining order to further protect the family concerned.