Wife horrified after discovering husband’s secret 75-page ‘paedophile manual’

A horrified wife shopped her husband to the police after she discovered he was keeping secret 75-page ‘paedophile manual’ in their shared bedroom.

Charity volunteer Julian Pitcairn endured a torrid “vigilante” response from his Surrey community following the shocking revelation, but he was spared a jail term by Judge Peter Moss.

The 58-year-old, who appeared at Guildford Crown Court, had printed out a mammoth 75-page paedophile manual intended to assist potential sexual predators in their offending, as well as an array of indecent images of children, the court heard.

The search term “How to trace schoolgirls” was also found on his computer, while indecent images discovered in his possession included pictures of children aged as young as six years, prosecutor Alexander Williams told the court on Friday afternoon.

Pitcairn was a previously well-respected local figure who volunteered with three charities including the Alzheimers Society, defence counsel David Jones said.

However, when his wife Katherine discovered the manual hidden in their own bedroom at their Walton-on-Thames, Surrey home, Pitcairn vehemently denied the items belonged to them – and instead attempted to claim they must have been planted there by a burglar.

Judge Moss heard no other mention of any burglary at their address and Pitcairn’s wife subsequently went to police secretly with her discovery with an anonymous complaint. Her husband was arrested following his wife’s discovery in March 2018.

Despite the ordeal of her discovery, she chose to stand by Pitcairn and Mr Jones cited the staunch defence his closest family afforded him throughout his trial.

However, on his conviction by a jury, the judge said Pitcairn initially failed to accepted the grave reality of his situation and attempted to stick with his far-flung alibi, but admitted the offences to a probation officer the following week.

In mitigation, Mr Jones cited his client’s reputable public standing and the intense vilification he had suffered since his appearance on court, as the judge heard he had received abusive letters and messages on his front door since his arrest was exposed.

The court also heard Pitcairn had accepted he had a problem, and had suffered difficulties in his relationship with his wife. But the defence told the judge the defendant had made real and positive steps to address his issues.

Mr Jones added: “He doesn’t present a risk to the public and would appear to be suitable for the risk rehabilition programme. Your Honour is going to impose a Sexual Harm Prevention Order, which can accommodate and deal with all those concerns Your Honour rightly has.

“He is 58 years old, of good character and you will recognise he was arrested as he was going to volunteer for the Alzheimer’s Society. He has taken the decision, in light of this conviction, to resign from three charities. That was something he had done in his spare time. He is a good man.”

Judge Moss appeared sympathetic to Pitcairn and his plight, saying: “It leaves me speechless, really.”

Pitcairn, of River Mount, Walton-on-Thames, appeared in the dock with thinning white hair and a placid facial expression. He was wearing glasses and a grey patterned suit with blue shirt and navy tie and his gaze was fixed on Judge Moss. His brother and sister attended the sentencing and sat in the public gallery.

He was sentenced on one count of possession of a paedophile manual and three counts of possessing indecent images of children after being charged in September 2018 – and convicted of all four charges by a unanimous verdict on May 10.

Pitcairn was handed a total of 16 months imprisonment, which was suspended for 24 months, attend 27 sessions of sexual offenders treatment programme, complete 20 days of rehab and 120 hours unpaid work.

He was also required to pay £3,640 costs, and will also have to sign the sex offenders register for a total of 10 years. Judge Moss also ordered him to pay a victim surcharge and imposed a Sexual Harm Prevention Order (SHPO), also for a decade.

Sentencing Pitcairn, Judge Moss said: “This is a very large fall from grace for a 58-year-old man of positive, good character. People speak very highly of you and your work in the community for three charities after your retirement from responsible positions.

“Loss of status in the community will hurt, and you have already been subjected to public vilification of the most public and shocking kind – that nobody should suffer, whatever they have done.

“The jury convicted you of possession on four counts – count one relates to the paedophile manual… it was not a lot of images of children, but images of an unpleasant, disgusting form.

“You claimed this material, which was found by your wife in your bedroom, had been planted there by some unknown hand – by some careless burglar who left it behind. The trial regarding the paedophile manual was thorough and the jury convicted you. It was a very, very thorough investigation into this.

“The high-watermark of these serious cases is the paedophile manual… I have noted that this is the most serious of these four cases. They are all serious and the guidelines have no starting point.

“You are a man of good character and the author of the pre-sentence report must have been pleasantly surprised having met you shortly after conviction. You had woken up out of your stupor to realise what a position you were in.”

Concluding the sentencing, Judge Moss said: “If there is a punishment, it is the loss of your good standing in the community.”