A PERVERT who threatened to rape girls who refused to send him indecent images of themselves has been jailed.

Christopher Laing, from Johsntone, was described by a judge as “every parent’s worst nightmare” when he was sentenced to seven and a half years in prison at Teesside Crown Court in England.

The 38-year-old was found guilty of multiple online sexual offences against children including possession of images, making indecent images, sexual communication, causing or inciting teen girls into sexual activity and attempting to meet a child after grooming.

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He was caught when he travelled to Cleveland in an attempt to meet up with a 15-year-old girl in June 2023, after communicating with her sexually online.

Laing sent photographs of himself travelling on a train and had booked a hotel in the area.

After the girl informed her parents that he was travelling to the area, they alerted cops.

He was arrested at the station as his train came in.

His mobile phone was seized as part of an investigation, and it was discovered he had been in contact with several teenage girls.

Laing had attempted to goad the girls into sending indecent images of themselves to him for money and gifts.

When the children refused, he made threats to rape them.

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Officers found evidence on his laptop that he had researched the addresses of his victims and knew where each of them lived.

During sentencing, Judge Carroll expressed concern regarding Laing’s threat of rape against children in order to fulfil his sexual desires, describing him as “every parent’s worst nightmare”.

He also praised the bravery of the victims in coming forward.

Victim impact statements read out to the court heard that one teenage victim no longer felt safe and worried every day that she would receive a message on her phone from Laing.

Her mental health had declined as she was taunted by the memory of Laing’s messages.

Another victim described how her confidence had been shattered, and was afraid to go to school, fearing that people knew about the messages that he had sent to her.

Laing will not be eligible for parole until he has served five years in prison.

He was also made subject to an indefinite sexual harm prevention order and must also sign the sex offenders register for life on his release from prison.

Detective Constable Dave Riley, of the Police Online Investigation Team, said: “The bravery of these victims in coming forward to alert police to Laing’s activity ensured that he was given a custodial sentence which will prevent him from harming other young girls.

“Their patience and honesty during the investigation process is highly commended.

“I hope that this case encourages anyone else suffering at the hands of an online abuser like Laing, to come forward and tell police.

“Please don’t suffer in silence. If you are suffering any kind of sexual abuse, and feel ready to report it to the police, please call 101. Officers are here to listen and support and bring suspects to justice.”