Shannon stepfather remanded in custody

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The Independent Online

The stepfather of kidnapped schoolgirl Shannon Matthews was remanded in custody today when he appeared in court charged with possessing indecent images of children.

Craig Meehan, 22, appeared before magistrates in Dewsbury, West Yorkshire, accused of 11 specimen offences of possession of indecent images of children.

Nine-year-old Shannon disappeared on 19 February and was discovered hidden in the base of a bed in a flat just one mile from her home in Dewsbury after a dramatic 24-day search by police.

Magistrate Wayne Perriman remanded Meehan in custody until 11 April when he will appear again at Dewsbury Magistrates' Court.

The court was told Meehan faced 11 charges of possessing 140 indecent images of children graded at levels one to four.

The images were found on two computers recovered from Meehan's address in Dewsbury Moor, the court was told.

Meehan entered the dock in handcuffs flanked by two security guards.

Wearing glasses and a black Manchester United shirt with the name Ronaldo on the back, Meehan spoke only to confirm his name, address and age.

He sat and looked straight ahead throughout the 10 minute hearing and showed no emotion as details of the charges were read out.

He stood to listen to Mr Perriman as he was remanded into custody before being led away from the dock in handcuffs.

Friends of the family packed the courtroom to listen to the allegations against Meehan.