Actor Chris Langham has been jailed for ten months for downloading child porn.
The 58-year-old Bafta award-winning star, who wept in court during his sentencing hearing at Maidstone Crown Court, downloaded images and videoclips with names such as "bondage 11-year-old", "Philippine child prostitute" and "Lolita".
Langham claimed he was researching a paedophile character for a television drama and said he was trying to make sense of the sexual abuse he suffered as a child, but a jury convicted him last month of 15 counts of making an indecent photograph of a child.
Langham will serve five months, less the 43 days he has already spent in custody.
Judge Philip Statman said one of the victims was aged around eight-years-old, while others were between 11 and 13-years-old. He said: "Some of the children viewed are clearly prepubescent, others are fully developed, some of the children are clearly of Filipino extract. All have had inflicted upon them horrifying sexual abuse and, I want to make this absolutely clear to you, I must think first of those children. They are too young to consent."
Police raided the 58-year-old star's home in November 2005 as part of Operation Ore. Officers seized three computers which contained files called "Lolita", "incest", "rape", "whore" and "hussy".
Langham, who won a Bafta for his role in the BBC drama The Thick Of It, admitted looking at child porn but pleaded not guilty to the charges against him because, he said he wanted to make a public declaration that he was not a paedophile.
His defence was that he was conducting research for the BBC television series Help. Langham told Maidstone Crown Court he and a co-writer had created a paedophile character called Pedro whose catchphrase was "I'm only a minor offender", and wanted to explore the way society viewed sex offenders through him. The episodes, however, were never made.
Outside court, Langham's solicitor, Angus McBride, read a statement on his behalf. It said: "The court has confirmed ... that I am not a paedophile. It has reached this conclusion having considered reports by social services, the Probation Service, a senior consultant psychiatrist and an expert in sexual offenders with 30 year's experience.
"If the prosecution had accepted this at the beginning I would have pleaded guilty. I have always admitted I should never have downloaded those abusive images. I am delighted that at last my account has been proved to be the truth."
Click to view image: '95036-6D348D12D77BB7FFC2B1731E40AB.jpg'
|Liveleak on Facebook|