A man has been handed a seven-year banning order after he was found to have thousands of 'upskirt' images saved on his phone.

Martin Behan was given a sexual harm prevention order and told he cannot own or possess any mobile phone which has a camera on the front or back.

The 64-year-old, of Winters Way, Waltham Abbey, previously admitted two counts of outraging public decency in February 7.

The investigation began after he targeted a woman shopping in Tesco in Waltham Abbey.

At about 7.30pm on August 23, 2018, the woman felt something brush against her leg.

The victim turned around to find Behan crouched behind her with his phone facing upwards towards her.

She demanded his phone and Behan handed it over.

The woman then told security at the shop who apprehended Behan until police officers arrived and arrested him.

Behan’s phones, which were unlocked, were then seized and officers found thousands of photographs and videos of upskirting offences.

They took place in various locations including at train stations, at shops and in town centres in broad daylight.

Behan was re-arrested yesterday at his address where after officers found further images on SD cards. He was charged before appearing at court, where he was also ordered to complete a 36 month community order, 35 sessions of a sexual offending behaviour programme, 120 hours unpaid work and 20 days rehabilitation activity requirement.

Chief Inspector Lewis Basford, district commander for Brentwood and Epping Forest, said: “We successfully secured a SHPO against Behan because he clearly poses a risk to women who are doing nothing more than going about their daily business.

“He won’t be able to own or possess a camera phone and he will have to complete numerous orders, programmes and unpaid work.

“If he goes on to breach any of the conditions put on him, he will face a possible prison sentence.

“I would like to thank the woman who raised the alarm about Behan’s behaviour, without her quick thinking and support, I have no doubt Behan would have continued to carry out his illegal acts.”