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Sentence increased for Kirkby Stephen child sex offender

Christopher Hodder
Christopher Hodder

[A] child sex offender from Kirkby Stephen has had his prison sentenced increased following a hearing at the Court of Appeal.

Christopher Hodder, aged 31, of Union Square, Kirkby Stephen, was originally sentenced at Carlisle Crown Court in March for four years.

On Friday 26th May, the Court of Appeal extended the sentence to eight years and four months. Hodder will spend five years and four months in custody and the remaining three years on an extension period.

The sentencing was in relation to the following offences:

  • Ten counts of attempting to engage a child in sexual activity
  • Three counts of inciting a child into engaging in sexual activity
  • Three counts of making indecent photographs of a child
  • Two counts of breaching a Sexual Harm Prevention Order
  • Possession of indecent image of a child

Hodder’s offending came to light following a referral from another force where Hodder had purported to be a teenage girl online and was talking to male teenage boys.

Officers from the Cumbria Constabulary Digital Media Investigation Unit found numerous chat threads with young boys who Hodder had befriended on Facebook posing as a teenage girl. Police discovered over 50 indecent images of children between two laptops which fell into categories A to C – with A being the most serious.

The offences occurred between June 2015 and September 2016.

Detective Inspector Jenny Beattie said: “Hodder is a predatory, dangerous offender, I am pleased that the original sentence was ruled as being too lenient and that the sentence has been increased.

“We will continue to work each day to make Cumbria safer by proactively targeting and prosecuting those who abuse children. I would hope that this acts as a deterrent to those who offend and gives those who have been abused the confidence to come forward.

“We encourage anyone who has any suspicions of any sort of abuse to contact us so we can investigate.”

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