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Arbroath paedophile stored child abuse files on his iPhone

David Cook, 22, was placed on the sex offenders register for three years after police uncovered illicit material on his phone.

David Cook at Forfar Sheriff Court.
David Cook at Forfar Sheriff Court.

An Arbroath paedophile will be kept under supervision for years after he was caught with a sick stash of child abuse files on his iPhone.

David Cook appeared at Forfar Sheriff Court to admit possession of the obscene material.

The 22-year-old was out when police raided his home in 2022.

He was later picked up by officers at his workplace.

Cook, of Shore in Arbroath, was placed on the sex offenders register for three years, ordered to complete a programme aimed at rehabilitating sex criminals and had his mobile phone forfeited.

Police arrived at work

Fiscal depute Stephanie Hendry told the court: “The accused and a witness (his partner) resided together at the locus having been in a relationship for around two years.

“At about 10.10am on September 14, police attended the locus and were afforded entry by the witness.”

Cook was at work and was traced an hour later.

David Cook at Forfar Sheriff Court.

Police collected him and brought him back to the Shore flat where they explained to him the terms of their search warrant.

Ms Hendry added: “A search was commenced and no devices were found to contain indecent images.

“The accused was searched and an iPhone was seized from his possession.”

That mobile was found to contain sick child abuse material.

Following the find, Cook was arrested.

No file sharing

Cook admitted taking or making the sick files between September 2016 and a week before the raid in 2022.

The case initially began life on petition but was reduced to a summary complaint.

His solicitor Billy Rennie explained around 10 vile images were recovered.

He said: “The number of images were relatively speaking very low.

“This is a case where he has not been involved in file sharing with others.

Cook appeared at Forfar Sheriff Court.

“He’s not been involved in systematically using sophisticated measures of hiding these images.

“I think these are relevant factors for sentencing.

“The suggestion in for supervision for three years and work with the Tay Project.

“He takes no issue with any of this.”

“Serious” charges

Sheriff Garry Sutherland granted forfeiture of the iPhone and ordered Cook to complete the Tay Project, a rehabilitation scheme for sex offenders.

The sheriff also placed Cook under supervision for three years and on the sex offenders register for as long.

He imposed a string of strict conduct requirements on Cook, including ordering him to only own one phone and one computer, make no efforts to conceal his internet use and make his devices available for inspection at any time.

He must have approval before using social media, contacting children under 18 and his accommodation and any work he undertakes must also be green-lighted by social work.

The sheriff said the charges were “serious” and could merit a custodial sentence.

However, he noted Cook is “a young man who perhaps has his own challenges.”

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