A PERVERT who downloaded more than 4,000 “appalling images” of children, some as young as two, has been jailed.

Images that included children being abused were found on the computer of John Hanning, of Lyndhurst Drive, Bicknacre.

Chelmsford Crown Court heard how Hanning also persuaded one girl aged 13 to engage in sexual activity with him by taking obscene photographs of her.

The 62-year-old was told by Judge Patricia Lynch QC it was one of the worst cases that have come before the court.

“Children in these images are being abused in a quite appalling way. Some of them are aged two and three,” the judge told Hanning.

She also told him there was no alternative to a prison sentence as he had also been involved in distributing some of the images.

He was jailed for five years after he admitted to 14 charges of possessing, making and distributing indecent images of children, and encouraging a girl aged 13 to engage in sexual activity.

There were 4,135 still images, 192 film clips and 36 extreme images, prosecutor Richard Stevens told the court, downloaded between March 2008 and February last year.

Hanning’s barrister, Stephanie Reed, told the court the offences took place at a time when he did not have a job, and she said he deserved a little credit for his guilty pleas.