Radio Sandwell News

Man jailed after one million child abuse images discovered

2013-11-25 17:14:17

John Bidmead
The images John Bidmead had "horrified"

A pensioner who had more than a million child abuse images and filmed his own attacks on young girls has been jailed for 19 years.

The number of images seized from 65-year-old John Bidmead is thought to be one of the largest in the UK.

The trail of sexual assaults came to light when Interpol tipped off police.

Bidmead, from Cullompton, Devon, admitted four rapes, six indecent or sexual assaults and 19 counts of taking or making indecent photographs.

Exeter Crown Court heard detectives raided Bidmead's home and caught him red-handed as he watched a child abuse movie, which was being streamed via his computer onto a 50-inch television.

The court heard officers were horrified to find not only the largest library of indecent images they had ever seen, but a computer file containing 124 home made movies showing him raping and abusing a child.

They seized a number of computers and discovered 1,500 more files containing images made by him of four more girls.

'Die in prison'

The retired lorry driver paid some of the victims to pose for photographs and bribed others with sweets or treats.

There were so many images and movies that police were not able to count them all.

The court heard that they gave up at 600,000 but estimated there were well over a million in total.

    • 576,288 images and 8,071 movies showing naked


    • 6,007 images and 1,289 movies showing children engaged
      in less serious sexual activity


    • 28,888 images and 1,235 movies showing adults having sex
      with children


    • 19,297 images and 3,480 movies showing child rape


  • 1,450 images and 167 movies showing sadism, torture or

Sentencing Bidmead, Judge Phillip Wassall said: "The magnitude of the number of images is quite staggering.

"You had more than a million images of children being abused, including significantly high numbers of images of the worst type of abuse.

"That was only a fraction because an analysis of your computer showed images of you raping and abusing a child."

The judge was told that Bidmead was so ashamed of what he did that he wanted to die in prison.

Richard Crabb, prosecuting, said Bidmead's home was raided by police after they were tipped off by colleagues in Russia about him downloading extreme child pornography.

An examination of a computer folder named "visits" included 124 movies showed him abusing the same girl, who appeared to be aged eight or nine.

She was traced and revealed how she had been groomed into taking part in role playing games in which all forms of sexual activity took place and were filmed.

In a victim impact statement, she said: "I now find it difficult to trust people and I feel upset, angry and confused."

Lives destroyed

Mr Crabb said other images or films showed four more girls, all aged between eight and 12, who had been photographed naked or touched by Bidmead.

"In addition, there was a vast amount of child pornography, much of which still has not been viewed. The best estimate is that the total exceeds a million and is certainly the largest find in this part of the world," he said.

Sean Brunton, defending, said: "He is ashamed and remorseful and says he expects to die in prison and it would be a fitting punishment for what he has done.

"He says he expects and would welcome a very long sentence which will represent the fact that he has destroyed the lives of several people and in the process destroyed his own life."


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