Social worker Mudassar Khan jailed for indecent images
A former social worker who was employed in Southampton and Portsmouth has been jailed for possessing and distributing indecent images of children.
Mudassar Khan, 26, from Reading in Berkshire, had contact with at risk children as part of his social work duties, Winchester Crown Court heard.
Hampshire Police began investigating Khan after his email address was used to post the images on the internet.
He pleaded guilty to 17 charges and was jailed for two years and eight months.
The court heard the charges related to more than 6,000 indecent images of children.
The FBI in the United States was involved in the investigation and assisted Hampshire detectives to build up a history of Khan's internet use.
'Breach of trust'
Greater Manchester Police also provided evidence that Khan was in contact with a registered sex offender discussing travelling to eastern Europe to engage in child exploitation.
Judge Jane Miller said Khan, of Cresswell Close, had committed a very serious breach of trust.
She said as a social worker involved in child protection he had a clear understanding of the damage exploitation caused to children.
The court heard Khan was a registered social worker, who had worked for both Southampton and Portsmouth City councils.
His registration was suspended in August 2012.
Khan's barrister, Unyime Davies, said his client was full of remorse for what he had done.
She said he had had a troubled childhood and had found it difficult to tell his family he was homosexual.
A spokeswoman for the Health and Care Professions Council said: "Mudassar Khan is currently subject to an interim suspension order, which prevents him from practising as a social worker in England.
"An interim order is imposed where it is felt there is an immediate risk to the public to allow the registrant to continue practising whilst the case is ongoing.
"A final hearing will be scheduled in due course."
Khan worked for Southampton City Council between April 2009 and January 2011, and for Portsmouth City Council for 11 months in 2011.
Both councils said they had followed safeguarding procedures when recruiting him.
Southampton council said in a statement: "There is no record of any disciplinary actions or warnings during Mr Khan's time of employment at the council.
"The police have confirmed that there is no evidence that any children were directly placed at risk during his period of employment in Southampton."
Julian Wooster, strategic director at Portsmouth City Council said: "We are not aware of any concerns about Mr Khan's behaviour whilst in Portsmouth."