Paedophile Wakefield author jailed after online sting

A Wakefield author with a history of child sex offences has been put behind bars after being stung by a paedophile hunter group.

Tuesday, 11th August 2020, 9:27 am
Holey who was jailed for 28 months, being led out of his flat on Kirkgate by police. (right-hand pic from Fleetwood Enforcers)

John David Holey, 52, thought he had been speaking with a 14-year-old girl when he made sexual suggestions towards her and even sent her a sexually explicit photo.

But Holey was eventually arrested after being tracked down to his flat at Warren House on Kirkgate by hunter group Fleetwood Enforcers, which had been behind the operation.

The group live streamed over the internet an attempt to confront Holey, but he refused to leave his flat. He was eventually brought out by police and put into a waiting patrol car.

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Appearing at Leeds Crown Court via video link from HMP Leeds, Holey admitted attempting to incite a child to engage in sexual activity, and attempting to breach a Sexual Harm Prevention Order (SHPO) between June 13 and 20, this year.

Prosecuting, Katherine Robinson, said that Holey had sent a friend request on the social network site, Tagged, to what he thought was a girl called 'Lydia', but was in fact a member of Fleetwood Enforcers looking to snare online predators.

The court heard that despite it being made clear at the start of the conversation that the decoy girl was only 14, Holey persisted and that the talk descended into him asking sex-related questions, before sending her a photo and asking her to send one back.

During interview Holey claimed he knew it was not a 14-year-old girl because it was "too good to be true".

Holey, who had a book published about growing up on the Flanshaw estate and also runs a ghost-hunting group, has a history of similar offending, including possession of indecent images of children in 2011 for which he received a community order.

He was then convicted of sexually assaulting a child a year later, for which he received the SHPO designed to prevent him offending, but admitted breaching this in 2015.

Mitigating, Chris Moran told the court that Holey had a troubled history with depression and alcohol-related issues.

He said his client had been badly affected by the lockdown period, adding: "It had difficult coping mechanisms in regard to his compulsions."

But Judge Simon Batiste said the offending was too serious for Holey to be dealt with by a community order.

He said: "It gives you no excuse to behave in this way.

"This is not someone of previous good character, this is an attempt to breach and SHPO.

"It was a very serious breach. It was a persistent and flagrant attempt."

He jailed him for two years and two months and gave him a new SHPO of an indeterminate length.