'Predatory paedophile lovers' jailed

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The Independent Online

Two predatory paedophile lovers who abused young boys at their flat were jailed indefinitely today.

Stephen Carruthers, 49, and John Bates, 45, began their relationship in prison while serving lengthy sentences for similar sex offences.

The authorities were powerless to prevent them living together on their release because of human rights legislation, Preston Crown Court heard.

The pair, who both have a string of paedophile convictions dating back to the early 1980s, met in Strangeways prison in Manchester and then went on to live in Blackpool, Lancashire.

They used enticements of money and boasts of celebrity connections to lure four 14-year-olds to their ground floor flat in Caunce Street in the resort.

Sentencing the pair to indeterminate sentences, Judge Christopher Cornwall said: "The simple dreadful reality in this matter in my judgment is you are incorrigible, predatory paedophiles.

"You simply cannot resist the temptation of making contact with boys with the purpose of abusing them for your own sexual gratification.

"The harm that you have caused to each of those boys is hard to calculate. What they all have in common is that you were intent on exploiting them and their innocence.

"You have cast a very dark shadow over their early teens."