6 OCTOBER 2016 • 9:09AM
A paedophile who was found with more than 137,000 indecent images of children has been spared jail because he wants to start a family.
Richard Arrowsmith faced up to five years in prison but was handed a suspended sentence after telling a judge he wanted to become a father.
The 41-year-old was arrested after police received a tip-off in February that an IP address linked to his Sky account was used to download the pictures.
Officers executed a warrant at his home and seized a computer, external hard drive, laptop, mobile phone and USB sticks on April 19 this year.
A court heard a police computerised scanning system flagged up at least 10,000 indecent images and videos on the devices.
These are not victimless crimes, they encourage serious abuse of sometimes very young children
Recorder Martin Butterworth
But a large number could not be categorised due to the sheer amount of movies and pictures, including 4,336 videos and 137,000 images.
Arrowsmith, of Church Gresley, Derbyshire, pleaded guilty to possessing indecent images and videos of children when he appeared at Derby Crown Court on Wednesday.
But he was spared jail after a judge heard he was hoping to start a family with his wife who was still supporting him.
Sentencing Arrowsmith to 10 months in prison, suspended for two years, Recorder Martin Butterworth, said: “You are 41-years-old, with no previous convictions and you pleaded guilty at the earliest opportunity.
“There are three charges against you in relation to the possession of indecent images of children.
“I am taking into consideration your previous good character, you have a wife who supports you, a steady employment and your hopes to start a family in the near future.
“These are not victimless crimes, they encourage serious abuse of sometimes very young children. You were less than honest about the nature of the images.”
I am taking into consideration your previous good character, you have a wife who supports you, a steady employment and your hopes to start a family in the near future
Recorder Martin Butterworth
Arrowsmith was ordered to pay £250 costs and carry out 160 hours of unpaid work as well as being made the subject of a curfew restricting him from leaving his house between 7pm and 5am.
He is also banned from working with children and was ordered to sign the sex offenders register.
The court heard police found 400 videos in Category A, which is the worst, with another 255 films in Category B and 186 films and 851 images in Category C.
Overall there were 1,692 movies and images ranging from Category A to C as well as the 4,336 videos and 137,000 images that remained uncategorised.
After he was arrested Arrowsmith admitted to viewing and downloading indecent images of children for “four or so years”.
But he told police officers he had never distributed or made any images or videos.
Digby Johnson, defending, told the court Arrowsmith and his wife, who was not present in court, were trying for children and wanted to start a family.