Fake casting agent Daniel Berry groomed young girls on Facebook

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Daniel BerryImage source, GMP
Image caption,
Daniel Berry was grooming children in the UK and abroad

A "cunning" paedophile who posed as a casting agent on Facebook to lure young girls into sending indecent videos of themselves has been jailed.

Daniel Berry offered fake modelling opportunities in a bid to exploit his 16 victims, aged between 12 and 15.

He "deliberately offered preposterous amounts of money" as well as "the pretence of a glamorous lifestyle and gifts", Judge Tina Landale said.

Berry, 31, was jailed for 10 years at Manchester Minshull Street Crown Court.

Between January 2018 and January 2019 he posed as a casting agent, initiating contact on Facebook before moving the conversation on to a mobile messaging app, a court heard.

The court heard how Berry, from Prestwich, would request photographs and videos of his targets before he enticed them into explicit poses.

'Depraved and horrific'

As Berry's victims became wary of his increasing demands and lack of payment, he threatened to post their videos online and sue them for wasting his time if they did not comply.

He told some girls they were his "new star" and one victim was offered £2m per year if she continued to send explicit videos.

Since 2012 he has also amassed more than 1,000 video recordings of child abuse, said to be the "most depraved and horrific imaginable".

He admitted 28 counts of causing or inciting children to engage in sexual activity, along with 10 counts of causing a child to watch a sexual act, five counts of distributing indecent images of children and one count of possessing an extreme pornographic image.

Berry also pleaded guilty to four counts of making more than 5,000 indecent images of children, including 1,329 classed as category A - the most serious.

Mark Shanks, defending, said in his early twenties Berry realised he had thoughts and desires that were "not normal" and wanted help.

Sentencing, Judge Landale said "these very grave offences were planned and executed with cunning".

Berry must sign the sex offenders register for life and is also subject to an indefinite sexual harm prevention order.

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