What started as a one word Instagram message ended with a 12-year prison sentence for Jack David Peter Jones, of Cynghordy in Llandovery.
The 23-year-old used Instagram and Snapchat to start conversations with girls as young as nine, before encouraging them to send him indecent photos and videos once he’d gained their trust.
Jones came to police attention when a mum contacted another force to say her daughter had received videos from a stranger on Instagram. Her daughter felt uncomfortable with the content, and was brave enough to speak out.
She was 11 years old. Jones was then 19, but had told her he was 14.
Her mum had saved screenshots of all the messages between Jones and her daughter, which she gave to our officers.
POLIT – our Police Online Investigation Team – carried out a warrant at his home, and his phone was examined. Officers soon discovered he’d been in contact with other girls online.
A detailed digital investigation identified four potential victims from across South Wales and the Newcastle area – one was just nine years old.
He’d sent messages that started out innocent, but before long he was encouraging them to send indecent photos and videos, while also sending sexual photos and videos of himself.
Officers contacted each of these girls to gain evidence and put measures in place to make sure they were safe.
During the investigation, it was established that Jones was continuing to contact children online, with two further victims identified in the Lancashire and West Mercia areas.
With the cooperation of five victims, and an evidence-led prosecution carried out in respect of the sixth, a strong case was built against Jones, who admitted to 12 charges:
- Four counts of causing or inciting a child under 13 to engage in sexual activity
- Three counts of causing or inciting a child to engage in sexual activity
- Two counts of making indecent images of a child
- Causing a child to watch a sexual act
- Sexual communication with a child
- Attempting to engage in sexual communication with a child
Thanks to the bravery of the victims in speaking out, he has now been jailed for 12 years.
It’s important that children and teenagers are confident and comfortable in talking about what they do online, and who they chat to. If you’d like some help in starting these conversations, these sites might help:
Teaching Your Child about Internet & Online Safety | NSPCC for general conversations and advice on how to react if your child has seen something that made them feel uncomfortable
Safeguarding Children – Get Safe Online for age-based advice and information about different social networks and games
If you talk with young people online and are worried about what you’re saying, there is support out there to help you manage your thoughts and behaviour. The Lucy Faithfull Foundation offers advice online, as well as a live chat and call service for people concerned about having sexual thoughts or feelings about children:
Get support website for people worried about offline offending | The Lucy Faithfull Foundation