A SEX offender who was thrown out of his Darlington home after falling behind with his rent has been jailed for failing to tell police his circumstances had changed.

Robert Jeffrey was left sleeping rough or in his own car after he lost the tenancy of his home on Harcourt Street in August last year, Teesside Crown Court heard.

The 52-year-old had moved to the area in December 2018 but regular visits to his home address by officers proved fruitless. However, once they contacted his landlord they discovered that he had been evicted for failing to pay his rent.

Vicki Lamballe, prosecuting, told the court that Jeffrey had a long history of sexual offences and several convictions for failing to comply with the notification requirements of the sex offenders' register.

She said his first relevant offence was in 2005 when he was jailed for making indecent images of children. Later that year he was jailed for four weeks for failing to notify the authorities of his whereabouts.

In 2006 he was given a three-year community order for attempting to meet a 14-year-old girl he had groomed on the internet.

The following year, Jeffrey had been made subject of a 10-year sexual offences order which banned him from using the internet after he admitted making indecent images of children.

In October 2013 he was jailed for two years and nine months for six offences of failing to comply with the Sexual Offences Prevention Order which included trying to groom the teenage girls through Facebook.

Miss Lamballe said Jeffrey had made no attempt to inform officers of his change of address and when he was arrested gave his address as no fixed abode.

The defendant pleaded guilty to one charge of breaching the reporting conditions of his notification order.

In mitigation, Aisha Wadoodi, said her 'highly educated' client found it difficult to the receive the support he required from the authorities due to his previous convictions and his lack of drink or drug problems.

She said: "He is unable to pay his rent, then he has rent arrears, then puts his head into the sand, leaves the address and doesn't notify the police. On this occasion his phone and laptop were searched but there was nothing there."

Judge Anthony Brown jailed Jeffrey for eight months for failing to register his address.

He said: "In order for the regime of the Sexual Offences Act to be affective, the notification requirements have to be complied with because that assesses the risk be monitored and managed.

"If people fail to comply with that order, it drives a coach and horses through the system. When you are released you must comply with your order."