A pervert who stored hundreds of indecent videos and images of young children being sexually abused has been locked up after admitting saving his ‘favourites’.

Steven Cuthbert hid his collection of sick images in a cloud ‘mega-storage system’ but admitted to police that he regularly deleted images when he lost interest in them.

The 37-year-old was branded a danger to the public when he appeared at Teesside Crown Court to be sentenced.

Jailing the father-of-one for 16 months, Judge Howard Crowson told him that his vast collection of images meant only a custodial sentence was appropriate after using pseudonyms to store his hoard.

"The number of videos was so great that you were forced to buy the additional storage to maintain your collection, hence the mega-storage device,” he said.

“You have admitted to having a sexual interest in young boys ages 12-13 but you have a particular interest in boys aged four and five.”

Read more: What are county lines? The drug networks exploiting vulnerable people across the North East

He added: "The probation service say you present as a high risk of harm to children and your offending is too serious for a suspended sentence. Offending on this level and seriousness must result in an immediate sentence."

Shada Mellor, prosecuting, said that Cuthbert admitted to police, when he was arrested in July, that he had a sexual interest in young boys and that he had spoken online to teenage girls who live abroad.

The court heard how the defendant a bought a "mega storage" device to house his disturbing collection of photos and videos - one of which was 32 minutes long.

Cuthbert, of Rothwell Crescent, Stockton, pleaded guilty to making indecent 30 videos and 57 images in Category A – the most serious offence; making 51 videos and 19 images in Category B; and making 103 videos in Category C between September 1, 2015, and July 7, this year.

Kelleigh Lodge, in mitigation, told the judge that his arrest had resulted in the breakdown of his marriage and his parents were in the court building to support their son but his mother was too upset to enter the courtroom.

She added: “He is genuinely sorry for his actions; he realises that that behaviour is totally inappropriate.”

Cuthbert was also issued with a ten-year sexual harm prevention order and was told he must sign on he sex offenders’ register for the same period of time.

Read next: