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Luton vicar James Ogley admits 'obscene conversations' with children

James Ogley Image copyright South Beds News Agency
Image caption James Ogley admitted seven charges of publishing obscene material

A vicar has admitted having obscene conversations with children as young as 12 on an internet chat blog.

Reverend James Ogley, 38, who is vicar at Saint Francis Church in Carteret Road, Luton, pleaded guilty at the town's crown court to seven charges of publishing obscene material.

Six offences relate to material posted online in June 2012 and one to publication in November 2012.

Ogley was granted bail and is due to be sentenced at the same court next month.

Judge Michael Kay QC said: "All sentencing options are open."

'Appropriate penalty'

The vicar was suspended from all his duties as a clergyman in January 2013 and remains so, a spokesman for the Diocese of St Albans said.

The Bishop of St Albans, the Right Reverend Dr Alan Smith, will impose "an appropriate penalty" after sentencing.

Image copyright South Beds News Agency
Image caption James Ogley is vicar at Saint Francis Church in Carteret Road, Luton

Speaking after the hearing, Dr Smith said: "I am deeply saddened that one of the clergy, of whom I expect the highest standards of behaviour, has committed these offences.

"My prayers are with all those affected by [his] actions and with the people of his parish."

Defence barrister Andrew Morton asked for sentencing to be adjourned for probation reports to be prepared.

Ogley, of Hollybush Road, Luton, pleaded not guilty to two further charges of publishing material in April 2012, but those charges will not be pursued and he will not stand trial.

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