A SHIPLEY man who showed indecent phone images to three 12-year-old girls on a train has been sentenced to four years and nine months in prison.

Gavin Rhodes, 34, of Briggate, pleading guilty to a series of sexual offences relating to young girls when he appeared at Leeds Crown Court.

Rhodes had been arrested by British Transport Police when he got off the train at Leeds station on August 30 last year, his phone was seized and his home was then searched with officers removing items including laptop computers and hard drives.

The Crown Court heard how Rhodes' phone revealed contact between himself and a 13-year-old girl in which pictures of a sexual nature had been exchanged. His laptops also brought to light more images of young girls and indecent videos, evidence was discovered he had been talking with children in internet chat rooms.

Rhodes admitted to downloading all the material and using an alias to exchange indecent images with a 13-year-old girl.

He also admitted talking to other girls between the ages of 12 and 16.

In total, he was found to have more than 7,000 indecent images on his computers and hard drives.

Rhodes was sentenced to four years for causing a child to engage in sexual activity, to run consecutively with six months for 21 offences of making indecent photographs of children also to run consecutively with three months for indecent exposure.

And he was sentenced to two years for three counts of engaging in sexual activity in the presence of a child, to be served concurrently with the sentence of four years and nine months for the other offences.

After he was sentenced, Detective Constable Lee Parsons said: “This sentence represents the culmination of a complex investigation.

Rhodes showed a flagrant disregard for the wellbeing of the young girls he engaged with online, putting his own sexual gratification above their welfare.

“It is satisfying to know that he has been brought to account for his actions. I would like to pay tribute to the hard work of all those officers involved with this case.”