A man has been jailed for eight years after pleading guilty to two counts of sexual activity with a child.
Leon Cornwall, 20, had been in touch with the two girls via Facebook and knew they were both 14-years-old before he had sex with them.
Cornwall, of no fixed address, was sentenced to four years in prison for each count.
Cornwall, who was sentenced today (Monday 6 February 2017) at Nottingham Crown Court, has also been placed on the Sex Offenders’ Register for life and was made subject to a sexual harm prevention order for life.
Detective Inspector Peter Quinn, of the Nottinghamshire Sexual Exploitation Investigation Unit, said: “Cornwall’s lengthy sentence demonstrates that the courts take these offences seriously and that police will fully investigate such allegations.”
Detective Constable Gill Cutts, of the Nottinghamshire Sexual Exploitation Investigation Unit, said: “I’d like to praise the bravery of the two victims in this case who will undoubtedly be scarred for a long time by the horrendous experiences they were put through.
“The aggravating factors were the dangerousness Cornwall poses as he knew their ages and knew it was wrong yet still went ahead with the acts, the intercourse was unprotected and one victim had to receive hospital treatment for three months. Cornwall also showed no remorse towards the victims and he committed the second offence while on crown court bail too.”
DI Quinn added: “The Internet presents young people with fantastic opportunities to access information but also renders them vulnerable to the criminal intentions of those who may seek to cause them harm.
“It is the responsibility of everyone to spot the signs that a child may be vulnerable to sexual exploitation.
“As a parent or carer it is important to discuss with children the differences between healthy and unhealthy relationships to help them understand the potential risks. Children and young people may find it difficult to recognise that they are being exploited.
“There are a number of practical steps you can take to protect children such as making sure you understand the risks associated with your child being online, putting measures in place to minimise these risks, and remaining vigilant around their children’s Internet use in all its forms, including online gaming and mobile phone apps.”
An NSPCC spokesperson said: “After the traumatic abuse they have suffered, it is now vital that Cornwall’s victims receive the support to move forward with their lives.
“These girls were contacted via social media – reminding us all of the dangers our children and young people face in the online world.
“One of the most effective ways to keep them safe is through open and timely conversation around online safety. The NSPCC’s website offers advice to parents around starting these talks and our Net Aware guide offers practical advice for the 50 most popular social networking sites, apps and games.
“Parents and guardians with concerns can call the NSPCC’s online safety helpline on 0808 800 5002, while children can contact Childline’s 24-hour service anonymously on 0800 1111 or via www.childline.org.uk.”
Please find some links below to advice on keeping children safe online: