A paedophile who groomed young girls over the internet was told by a judge that he had ‘molested them electronically’.
Joshua Dealey, 26, of Nursery Gardens, Tring, was sentenced to five years in jail by Judge John Plumstead who described him as a ‘cruel, calculating, predatory paedophile’.
The judge also passed an extended sentence of five years, which means he will be supervised by probation officers on his release until 2025.
Prosecutor Ann Evans told St Albans crown court on Friday that Dealey masqueraded on Facebook under two separate identities.
He pretended he was a 15-year-old called Sam Morgan and also Sam’s older cousin Matt, who was aged 18 to 21.
He targeted six young girls: one was 12, one was 13, two were 14, one was 15 and one was 16.
Mrs Evans said: “He groomed them over time and started sexually explicit conversations.
“He asked to look at their breasts or he sent them pictures of his sexually aroused penis.
“They would agree to meet, but he would renege on that and they would not meet.
“One girl fell hook, line and sinker and thought she was in a relationship for four or five months.”
When one of the victims said she was going to kill herself, he replied: “Show me your t..s.”
The prosecutor said that the girl had only said she would kill herself to get rid of him, but another of the victims had been badly affected by Dealey’s trickery and was now receiving counselling.
Dealey had received a police caution in November 2013 for trying to groom one girl. He was in contact with others before that and continued after he had been put on the Sex Offender Register for that offence, she said.
His home was raided in June last year and the police seized more than 200 indecent images and movies of children.
In a police interview he said he needed help.
Dealey appeared for sentence having pleaded guilty to causing or inciting a child to engage in sexual activity and possessing indecent images and movies of children.
Graeme Knight, defending, said although he is 26, Dealey is hugely lacking in confidence. He said he had no physical contact with any of the girls.
Judge John Plumstead said: “This man represents a blizzard of sexual harm.
“He is a sexual predator who was getting sexual satisfaction from cheating children.”
He told him: “You were exercising you sexual taste for children by molesting them electronically.
“You are a cruel, calculating, predatory paedophile.”