A PAEDOPHILE preyed on a 15-year-old girl after grooming her through internet chat rooms, a court was told yesterday.

Christopher Johnson, of Darlington, had sex with the girl and took indecent images of her after entering teen chat rooms last year.

Yesterday, he was jailed for two years after pleading guilty at Newcastle Crown Court to 15 sexual offences.

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The 38-year-old admitted three counts of indecent assault, one of sexual grooming and ten of making indecent images.

He also admitted one charge of voyeurism after recording himself having sex with a woman without her consent.

Police also found 2,745 indecent images of children on his computer.

Johnson, from Washbrook Drive, near Longfield School, went online between August and September last year and logged on to teenage chat rooms, despite admitting he was an adult.

He struck up a relationship with the 15-year-old girl, from North Tyneside, with the intention of grooming her for sex.

He also spoke to the youngster through a web camera.

Detective Constable Dave Kernaghan, of North Tyneside police, said: "This case ably demonstrates the dangers of chat rooms which are aimed at teenagers, but can easily be accessed by adults who use them deliberately as a means of finding young girls and grooming them for sexual purposes.

"After using the internet to make contact with this young girl, Johnson then travelled to North Tyneside from Darlington in order to have sex with this underage child.

"I would like to remind parents of the dangers that their children can face when they log on to these chat rooms.

"We would also advise parents to talk to their children about the dangers of chatting to people online, agree with them that they will not give personal details to anyone, and tell them to never meet with anybody that they meet online.

"Parents should monitor closely what sites their children are going on to and who they are corresponding with.

"Computers should also be in a room where everyone has access, rather than the child's own bedroom."

For more information about how to protect your children from online dangers, visit thinkuknow.co.uk