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Vicar jailed for possessing thousands of indecent child photos

Christopher Goble, who kept over 400 images in a hidden gallery on his mobile phone was sentenced at Warwick Crown Court on Thursday.

He told of his sexual interest in children in a chat message, the court heard, while more than 600 other pictures which were found on his home computer had been classed as being in the "most serious category".

The reverend who served within the Diocese of Coventry pleaded guilty to making indecent images of children in November, after his house was raided by police.

Goble also admitted to two charges of possessing extreme pornography and prohibited images.

The former Rector for the Church of St Mary in Ilmington will be placed on the sex offender register for 10 years.

Judge de Bertodano said during sentencing: "You have made a very real contribution to the horrific abuse of the children in these pictures.

"These are very serious offences. People sometimes think that because it's just looking at pictures or movies that other people have made, you are not doing anything seriously wrong yourself.

"But that's not the case. What you are looking at is pictures of real children being horrifically abused.

"These pictures are created for a market, and that market is people who want to look at them."

Andrew Crump, of the Crown Prosecution Service, told the BBC: "As the vicar of a church, Christopher Goble was in a position of trust.

"By viewing indecent images of children, Goble abused the trust that had been placed in him by the community."

A diocese spokesperson told Premier: "We confirm with sorrow and regret that a priest in this Diocese has today been sentenced for offences relating to the possession of indecent images of children. Some of the images were deemed to be within the most serious category.

"We acknowledge how difficult and distressing this has been for so many people.

"The Diocese of Coventry remains committed to doing everything possible to ensure the wellbeing of children, young people and adults who look to us for respect and care.

"We urge anyone with relevant information to contact Warwickshire Police or our Diocesan Safeguarding Team (02476 521345)."

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