Toddler rapist faces life in jail

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The Independent Online

A paedophile nursery worker who raped a toddler in his care and built up an online "community" to incite the sexual abuse of young girls was today warned to expect a life sentence.

Paul Anthony Wilson, 20, was told he would "almost inevitably" receive an indeterminate jail term when he is sentenced by a High Court judge next month.

After the nursery assistant pleaded guilty to two counts of rape and 45 charges relating to the grooming of more than 20 girls, police confirmed that he had used a mobile phone to record the abuse of the toddler.

Officers said the two recordings were seized in January when Wilson was arrested for blackmailing a teenage girl into performing sex acts via a webcam.

Detectives admit they were shocked at the level of depravity of images found on the phone and computers used by Wilson, who even posed as a model agency scout to befriend some of his victims.

The rapist, who worked at the Little Stars Nursery in Nechells, Birmingham, for around 18 months, is known to have abused the toddler at his workplace, although there is no evidence that further offences took place there.

The paedophile, who had no previous convictions, was arrested at 5.20am on Wednesday January 5 this year by officers investigating a single allegation relating to online grooming.

But as detectives investigated the offence, examination of computer equipment and mobile phones recovered from the suspect's bedroom uncovered a haul of indecent images and the recordings of the toddler.

Inquiries then found that the child had previously attended the nursery where Wilson worked and that the offences happened within the nursery itself.

Detective Chief Inspector Gary Booth, who led the police inquiry, said the parents of the toddler were then informed of the incident, and had been supported throughout the subsequent investigation by family liaison officers.

Meanwhile, a multi-agency operation was launched and specialist child abuse investigators and social workers attended Little Stars on January 6 to speak to staff and inform parents of the investigation.

Mr Booth said: "This was a complex case in which Paul Wilson created multiple online identities to manipulate and coerce teenage girls across the country to behave in an inappropriate way.

"Over a period of time, Wilson formed online relationships with his victims with the sole aim of using them to satisfy his perversions.

"Our thoughts remain with those victims and their families who have suffered at Wilson's hands."

The case against Wilson was not opened during today's hearing at Birmingham Crown Court, but it is known that he adopted at least 23 false profiles to coerce and pressure his online victims into performing sexual acts via webcams.

It is also understood that he also posed as teenagers of both sexes to gain the confidence of those he met on social networking sites and the MSN messaging service.

Wilson, of Newbold Croft, Nechells, was remanded in custody and is scheduled to be sentenced on July 27.

Wilson is the second nursery worker to be convicted of child sex attacks in recent years.

Vanessa George is serving an indeterminate jail term after sparking nationwide outrage for abusing toddlers and taking photos at Little Ted's nursery, in Plymouth.

George, formerly of Douglass Road, Efford, Plymouth, was groomed as part of a major paedophile gang, along with three other women, by IT consultant Colin Blanchard.

Blanchard, formerly of Yea Fold, Rochdale, was told by a judge he may never leave jail for his "deep-rooted and long-standing" sexual abuses.