An accountant from Perth who conspired with an “undercover operative” to gain access to a child he could rape has been jailed for four years and nine months.
Jonathan Porter,49, was snared after Police Scotland officers were told about how he had been plotting online with the intention of sexually abusing a youngster.
The High Court in Edinburgh heard how Porter had been speaking to a person who can only be identified by the initial K.
The court heard Porter thought he was chatting to a “genuine” person who could help him commit crime against a child.
The child was fictional and Porter was actually communicating with an “undercover operative” who informed police about perverted Porter’s activities.
Detectives went to the offender’s home in Perth and arrested him.
During the probe they determined Porter had been making, possessing and distributing indecent images of children.
They also discovered Porter had sexually assaulted a five-year-old girl.
They arrested the finance professional and took him into custody, where he claimed that he had been indulging in fantasies with the undercover operative and had no intention of abusing any children.
On Wednesday, judge Lady Wise sent Porter to prison after hearing from defence advocate Andy Lamb KC about how the accused had “lost everything” because of his offending.
Passing sentence, she told Porter: “The whole course of offending is illustrative of a disturbingly unhealthy interest.
“You continue to minimise your offending and your understanding of your offending is limited.
“Your offences are of the most appalling nature and it is my duty to impose a suitable sentence.”
Jurors convicted Porter, now of Dunstable, Bedfordshire, in April 2023 on charges of making, possessing and distributing indecent images of children between July 2015 and October 2019.
He was also convicted of sexual assault on an occasion between December 2015 and November 2016 and conspiring to gain access to a child so he could sexually assault or rape them.
All the the offences took place at locations in the Perth area.
Sentence had been deferred for the court to obtain reports on the first offender’s background.
Lady Wise also placed Porter on the Sex Offenders Register for life.
Sick fantasy outlined online
The court heard previously Porter chatted to the undercover operative on “encrypted platforms” between October 11 2019 and October 16 2019 and asked whether they could get him access to a child that he could sexually abuse.
The jury were told Porter sent the message: “I’m confident that you are genuine and not a man trying to get off on this.”
When he was arrested, Porter told police officers that he had been on the platforms engaging in role play.
He did not give evidence in his own defence.
On Wednesday, the court heard Porter spent his career working as an accountant and had become “estranged’ from his wife and family as a consequence of his offending.
Mr Lamb told Lady Wise: “He accepts that nobody is to blame but himself.
“He has lost everything as a consequence of his actions.”
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