Autistic man avoids jail after being found guilty of child sex offencesBy Paul Cassell
January 07, 2013
A man who groomed boys for sex over the internet having previously been punished for the same offence has received a community sentence after it emerged he has autism.
Trevor Rossborough, 21, from Woodley, lured the two boys aged 11 and 13 after contacting them through Facebook and also downloaded dozens of child porn photographs and videos from the internet, Reading Crown Court heard.
Angus Robertson, prosecuting at the hearing on December 20, told how Rossborough made reference to sex acts and enticed the boys, who cannot be named for legal reasons, by offering to buy them cigarettes.
The court heard Rossborough used a pseudonym and told the younger boy he was 15. He later met him by chance outside a shop and asked him to perform a sex act on him.
Mr Robertson said: “The defendant was the instigator. [The younger boy] was more vulnerable to suggestion, which was not the case with [the teenager], who clearly wanted cigarettes and used the defendant to provide them.”
Police later seized two computers from Rossborough’s home in Bosworth Gardens, which contained more than 100 child porn photos and videos with some at the second highest level of seriousness.
The defendant was arrested and initially refused to comment on the allegations, but later admitted he had downloaded and looked at explicit pictures of boys and had become aroused by them.
He later admitted, at Reading Magistrates’ Court in December 2010, two counts of inciting a child to engage in sexual activity and three counts of making indecent images of children.
The court heard how Rossborough had been handed a six-month suspended sentence for a similar offence in January 2011, but this was prior to him being diagnosed with autism.
Michael Edmonds, defending, said: “He [Rossborough] is still coming to terms with his sexuality, and as Your Honour has indicated, there were underlying issues in his case.
“You have seen three to four psychological reports specifying that he is suffering from Asperger’s syndrome and has difficulty with social interaction, issues that can now be identified and worked on.”
Passing sentence, Judge Peter Ross did not impose the six-month jail term in light of Rossborough’s newly-found autism and instead sentenced him to a three-year community and supervision order.
He said: “It is right to say that no-one had identified that you suffer from autism and that you are at the high end in the Asperger’s part of the spectrum.
“I would regard it as unjust to activate the six-month detention.”
Judge Ross also ordered Rossborough to attend mental health and sex offenders’ programmes and others relating to being in contact with children, internet access and possessing images of children.
He was also placed on the sex offenders’ register indefinitely.