Beds, Herts & Bucks

Bushey LL Camps director Ben Lewis sentenced for child porn possession

Ben Lewis Image copyright Cascade News Agency
Image caption Lewis was reported to Hertfordshire Police in August by a worker

A children's camp director who admitted possessing indecent images of minors, has been given a suspended prison sentence, a court has heard.

Ben Lewis, 25, of Lullington Garth, Borehamwood, was a director of LL Camps - an activity centre in Bushey.

He admitted four charges of downloading or taking indecent images.

Lewis, who had already spent time on remand, was handed a two-year jail sentence, suspended for two years, and ordered to pay costs of £3,000.

LL Camps, which opened in 2010, was closed by Ofsted last August.

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Lewis was reported to Hertfordshire Police in August by worker Sandra Vicente, who had borrowed his phone and found naked images of three and four-year-old girls on it.

"I felt my brain was polluted," she told a previous court hearing.

Mother 'did washing'

Prosecutor Ann Evans told St Albans Crown Court: "Chat logs, indecent images and videos have been recovered from several of his devices going back a number of years - and found in his room by one of his old laptops was a pair of child's knickers which he tried to explain away as being his brother's.

"Then he said it was his mother who did the washing."

Image caption The company's website claimed it was the only US-style summer camp in the UK
Image copyright South Beds News Agency
Image caption Ben Lewis was ordered to register as a sex offender and pay the prosecution's costs of £3,000

Since his arrest, Lewis spent three months remanded in custody and eight months on a qualifying curfew when he was tagged.

The court heard he had completed an online course set up by Stop It Now - a charity which aimed to prevent child sexual abuse.

Lewis's sentence also included registering as a sex offender, being banned from working or having unsupervised contact with children and attending up to 100 days on a community sex offender programme.

Last month, the owner of LL Camps - Tal Landsman, 26, of Admiral Drive in Stevenage - was cleared of child cruelty charges relating to the case.

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