Saturday 21 July 2018

Convicted sex offender jailed after 'encouraging mum to send two sons for modelling auditions'

Judge said the most serious breach was Luckwill presenting himself as someone with contacts in modelling because it involved seeking access to children

Anthony Luckwill
Anthony Luckwill

Declan Brennan

A convicted sex offender has received a partially suspended prison sentence for repeatedly breaching a child protection order.

UK citizen Anthony Luckwill (45) has a history of claiming to be involved in the production of films and as far back as 1999 he had set up a child acting agency in Kerry. He has numerous convictions for possession of child pornography in Ireland and in Wales.

In July 2012 a court imposed 16 orders against him as part of child protection measures introduced in the Sex Offenders Act 2001. These included forbidding him from posing as a film director or journalist in search of child subjects.

Dublin Circuit Criminal Court heard that in November 2016 Luckwill approached a woman in the Longford Arms hotel and told her he was involved in the modelling industry and encouraged her to send her two young sons for auditions.

Luckwill had rented a premises from the Chamber of Commerce in Longford town on the pretence of running a business. When local gardaí became aware of Luckwill's presence in the town they approached him and searched him.

They found an electronic device which contained 104 images of young boys in their underwear. The court heard the images are not categorised under the law as child pornography but that Luckwill admitted he breached the 2012 court order by having them.

Luckwill also admitted breaching the same order by changing his name by deed poll in February 2017 and by assessing social networking sites. Luckwill had informed gardaí that he was assuming the new name “Colin Harold Gregory” and that he planned to move to the UK.

Judge Pauline Codd imposed a two year prison sentence and suspended the last six months. She said the most serious breach was Luckwill presenting himself as someone with contact in modelling because it involved seeking access to children.

Diarmaid Collins BL, defending, said that his client wished to change his name because of the high degree of media attention he attracted. Counsel said journalists had doorstepped him at a number of hostels he was staying at and as he attended the Probation Service offices.

He said there was fire damage to a house he had stayed at with a friend. Mr Collins also said there was a reported incident where another member of the public had to be escorted because a group of concerned members of the public mistook him for Luckwill.

Luckwill also has a conviction for inciting a child to commit an act of gross indecency from the UK island of Guernsey and convictions for sexual assault and defilement of a young boy in Meath.

Mr Collins said that Luckwill wasn't trying to be clandestine about his name change and informed gardaí the next day.

Garda Sergeant David Grogan told the court that in January 2017 gardaí went to visit Luckwill at his rented room in Rathgar, Dublin and seized a laptop and an iPod. The laptop was set up to delete the internet search history every hour.

114 images of young boys in underwear were found on the devices as well as evidence of visiting a number of social media websites, including dating sites involving profiles created using online pseudonyms. The images again are not classified as child pornography but he was in breach of the order prohibiting him from looking at images of children naked or in their undergarments.

Sgt Grogan agreed with Mr Collins that investigators forensically examined the laptop and iPod. Counsel said there was no evidence that his client was using social media for predatory behaviour.

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