Monday 19 February 2018

Multi-million-selling rock star admits he attempted to rape baby

Antony Stone and Benjamin Wright

Rock singer Ian Watkins has been labelled a "determined and committed paedophile" after he pleaded guilty to a string of sex offences, including the attempted rape of a baby.

The drug-crazed former lead singer with multi-million selling band Lostprophets plotted the abuse with two mothers in a series of text and internet messages in which he spoke of his desire to "cross the line" and to intoxicate one of his victims by blowing crystal-meth smoke into the child's face.

Watkins (36), from Pontypridd, south Wales, pleaded guilty to a string of sex offences he had previously denied in a last-minute change of plea ahead of what would have been his trial at Cardiff Crown Court.

The charges included sexually touching a one-year-old and encouraging a crazed groupie to abuse her own child during a sordid webcam chat.

Watkins also admitted possessing and making child porn as well as launching the plot to rape a baby.

The disgraced rocker originally faced 24 charges, including two of actual child rape, but insisted sex with the child did not take place.

He pleaded guilty to 11 charges yesterday, nine of which were unchanged, and two of attempted baby rape.

SICKENING

Prosecutor Christopher Clee QC told the judge that both of the attempted rape admissions were accepted, partly to spare a jury the ordeal of having to watch sordid video evidence.

"From the footage, there is an argument as to whether the full offence (of rape) is made out," he told judge Mr Justice Royce. "If it is made out, it is minimal. There is so little difference between the full attempt and the attempt as to make no difference."

Previous hearings discussed arranging counselling for jurors who might need it.

As sentencing arrangements were discussed, a pale-faced and grey-haired Watkins began shaking in the dock.

Mr Clee read to the court a series of text and internet messages between Watkins and two female co-defendants.

On March 23 last year, Watkins sent Woman A a message saying he wanted a "summer of filthy child porn" and how he wanted to take things "to the next level".

Mr Clee also gave details of a sickening 17-minute video in a London hotel room which showed Watkins perform a sex act on the child.

Computer analysts found the footage uploaded to an online storage facility.

The court heard the tattooed singer claimed he had no memory of the key video evidence.

Mr Clee outlined a series of meetings between Watkins and the two female fans, who were the mothers of the baby abuse victims targeted by him. Watkins also indulged in a depraved virtual sex session in October last year where, using Skype, he got Woman B, aged 24, to abuse her baby at his instigation.

In the footage, which takes the form of a split screen, Watkins is seen to pleasure himself and refer to the woman and her baby as his "slave duo".

The pair also discuss looking after the child as it grows up and making it have sex with animals and take drugs.

At a later date she sent him a picture of herself having oral sex with the baby.

Mr Clee said that when police raided the home of Watkins following his arrest in September last year they also found a box of camcorder cassettes.

These proved to hold recordings of filmed sex acts with under-age girl fans, one of whom he met up with in a New York hotel. Mr Clee said that one girl (16), contacted Watkins saying she was a fan who was still a virgin and went on to agree to give her virginity to him.

She brought a schoolgirl outfit he had asked her to dress in.

They are then filmed having oral and full sex in the hotel before he asks her: "Do you like being my underage slut?"

He also said that a laptop seized from Watkins' home was password protected and was later sent to GCHQ to have it "cracked."

When it eventually was the password was discovered to be "If***kids."

Watkins will be sentenced on December 18 at the same court.

Irish Independent

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