A man from Ashford has been jailed following an investigation by Kent Police’s Paedophile Online Investigation Team.

Robert Ellis, 33, sent a series of sexual messages to someone he thought was a 13-year-old girl from London in November and December 2018.

The person he was writing to was in fact a Kent Police investigator and Ellis was arrested at his home on 8 January 2019.

In the messages he sent, Ellis made sexual comments and attempted to arrange to meet the girl in London for sex.

Following his arrest, he admitted a series of charges, including attempting to incite a child to engage in sexual activity and attempted sexual communication with a child.

Ellis, previously of Kings Avenue, Ashford, was jailed for one year and eight months at Canterbury Crown Court on Wednesday 27 January 2021.

He was also made the subject of a Sexual Harm Prevention Order (SHPO) restricting his use of the internet and banning him from unsupervised contact with children for 10 years.

Detective Constable Joanne Gordon, of Kent Police’s Paedophile Online Investigation Team, said: ‘Investigations like this one are designed to protect vulnerable children by tracking down those who would exploit them via the internet.

‘The jail term Ellis received, along with the court order put in place, will prevent him from attempting to contact children online for sexual purposes.’

Detective Constable Joanne Gordon

By Ed

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