'Aladdin's Cave' of Porn Two Jailed
Press Association, carried in Guardian
December 20, 2006
A former vicar and an "evil" paedophile rights campaigner were jailed after a massive "Aladdin's Cave" of child porn was found in a country mansion.
The sickening library of magazines, videos, photographs and slides - nearly 50,000 images altogether - was stored in a secret vault behind a bathroom wall.
The collection, which took half a century to amass, was discovered after undercover police infiltrated the International Paedophile Child Emancipation Group and its subsidiary, Gentlemen With An Interesting Name. Both championed the legalisation of sex between adults and children.
Irishman Thomas O'Carroll, 61, a one-time teacher turned journalist, helped run them from his end-of-terrace home in Shildon, Co Durham, within half a mile of four schools. According to police he saw them as a base for an "international secret society" of "academic" child abusers to further his twisted aims.
The self-confessed paedophile, who was jailed for two and a half years at London's Middlesex Crown Court, was arrested earlier this year during a series of raids involving 100 officers. Also detained was millionaire Michael Studdert, 67, a former Anglican minister and school chaplain from Surrey. He was sentenced to four years.
The court heard the "highly sophisticated" secret vault, opened by an innocent-looking hook, had been built at the pensioner's then home on a sprawling 17-acre country estate at Hindhead. It contained one of the largest child porn collections of its kind.
Children - predominantly boys and as young as six - had been filmed and photographed being raped and tortured.
Studdert, whose father was Archdeacon of Surrey, admitted 20 sample counts of making indecent images of youngsters between January 2001 and the beginning of this year, one of distributing them and one of possession.
County Carlow-born O'Carroll, of Leam Street, Leamington Spa, Warwickshire, pleaded guilty to two charges of distributing child porn images between January 1994 and July 2005.
The grey-haired defendants remained impassive as Judge Roger Chapple told them their crimes were so serious prison was inevitable.
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