Sex offender who 'wiped internet history' jailed for breaching court orders

Robert Swinden, 46, from St Neots has been jailed for more than a year after breaching orders.

Robert Swinden, 46, from St Neots has been jailed for more than a year after breaching orders. - Credit: Cambs Police

A registered sex offender who wiped his internet history, declined to share information about his devices and hid two bank cards from police has been jailed for more than a year. 

Robert Swinden, 46, was handed a Sexual Harm Prevention Order (SHPO) in 2019 with conditions to monitor his behaviour for 10 years. 

As part of routine checks officers visited his home in St Neots on March 2, 2020, and inspected his mobile phone and home computer. 

Checks revealed there was no internet history on the phone which breached the terms of his SHPO.  

When asked to hand over all other devices that belonged to him he refused twice, again a breach of his order, and was arrested. 

A search was carried out at his home where two bank cards were found which Swinden failed to tell police about, and thus breached his sex offender register notification requirements. 

Swinden, of Russell Court, St Neots, was charged with two counts of breaching a SHPO and failing to comply with the sex offenders register. 

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He later pleaded guilty to the charges and in committing these offences, breached a suspended sentence previously given to him. 

Swinden was sentenced at Cambridge Crown Court on Thursday (January 27) where he was handed one year and eight months in prison. 

He was also made the subject of a new SHPO, lasting for 10 years. 

DC Decca Riondino, who investigated, said: “Sexual Harm Prevention Orders are put in place for a reason, namely to protect children from sex offenders. This case serves as a stark reminder of the consequences of breaching such an order, and that any inconsistences will be investigated. 

“Upon his release from prison we will continue to pay extremely close attention to Swinden, including regular visits to his registered address, checking his electronic devices and any further offending will be put before the courts.” 

Anyone who is concerned someone may have been convicted of a sex offence, and could be posing a risk to someone, can apply for disclosure information through Sarah’s Law: https://bit.ly/34d5lPh 

If you’re concerned about your own behaviour online please visit the Lucy Faithful Foundation website for support and advice