Jailed: Paedophile who abused children as young as four
- Credit: Met Police
A convicted paedophile living in Bethnal Green who flew to Cambodia to engage in sexual activity with children including a four-year-old has been jailed.
Gary Cosgrove was sentenced at the Old Bailey to two years and five months on Friday, October 29, and given a 10-year sexual harm prevention order.
He admitted making indecent images of a child and inciting a child to commit a sexual act when he previously appeared in court in September.
He was arrested after police received information from the National Crimes Agency’s international liaison network in 2018 about a man “sexually abusing, grooming and exploiting children” in Sihanoukville in Cambodia.
“Cosgrove targeted vulnerable children and groomed them with gifts before sexually abusing them,” the Agency’s Peter Vernon revealed.
“Child sex offenders like Cosgrove think they won’t get caught in a remote part of the world.
“However, borders are not a barrier. We target British nationals who commit these offences overseas to ensure they face justice.”
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Detectives from the Met’s Central Specialist Crime unit arrested Cosgrove at Heathrow Airport on his return on May 31, 2018, on suspicion of sexual activity with a child.
He admitted being in Cambodia and giving children money, clothes and toys — but denied sexual offences.
Items were seized during a search at his address in Bethnal Green included electronic devices which linked him to child sexual abuse, the court heard.
Det Con Mike Penn from the Met’s Central Specialist Crime unit said after the Cosgrave’s sentencing: “This highlights our determination to track down these offenders and secure convictions to safeguard vulnerable children — no matter where they are in the world.”
A video made on an iPhone on January 5, 2018, featured an explicit conversation where a man is heard talking to a four-year-old girl.
The location showed it to be Cambodia, where Cosgrove was at the time. There were also images of naked children.
Cosgrove, who was charged with making indecent images of a child and inciting a child to commit a sexual act, denied being the man on the video.
But voice analysis by an expert in forensic speech and acoustics found the recording provided “moderately strong support that he was the speaker”.