A MAN who tried to spy on members of the Chinese Olympic swimming team in a women's changing room has been told he could be spared jail.
Declan Crosbie was caught peering over the top of cubicles as members of the team were getting changed at a sports centre in Leeds.
He will be sentenced next month after being assessed to see if he is suitable for a sex offenders' programme, a judge said today.
A woman reported seeing Crosbie enter the changing room, Leeds Crown Court heard.
Members of the Chinese team, who were training at the pool ahead of the London 2012 Olympics, also made a complaint after spotting him looking over the top of cubicles while they were changing.
When staff at the centre went to find the 25-year-old, he hid in a cubicle and tried to answer them in a woman's voice.
He then came out and begged staff not to call the police before running away.
Crosbie, from Lea Farm Place, Leeds, later handed himself in to police and pleaded guilty last month to trespass with intent to commit a sexual offence.
The defendant, who sat with his head bowed throughout today's hearing, was jailed for three years in 2009 after trespassing in a private home and being found standing over a sleeping student, whose trousers had been pulled down.
He also has convictions for voyeurism in 2005 and 2006.
The Recorder of Leeds, Judge Peter Collier QC, queried if the case should be fast-tracked under Olympic rules but was told Crosbie had not specifically targeted the Chinese team members.
The judge said: "This offence is technically an Olympic offence because the victims were members of the Chinese swimming team who were training at facilities here in Leeds.
"There's no suggestion you knew that's who they were and I'm satisfied the sight of any woman would do if she's in a state of undress."
Judge Collier heard that Crosbie should have entered a sex offenders' programme while in jail but was never allocated a place.
He said: "It seems then that the most important thing that I can do for the public is try to ensure you do receive the treatment that you need.
"There's clearly no better prospect of you receiving that in prison now than there was in 2009."
Judge Collier said a three-year community order, involving a period of residence in a bail hostel and participation in a sex offenders' treatment programme, would be an appropriate sentence.
But he told Crosbie he needed to be assessed in a bail hostel for 28 days before the sentence could be passed.
The sentencing was adjourned until September 17.