A HIGH school technician has been spared jail after he was caught with nearly 18,000 sickening videos and photographs of children being sexually abused.

Graham Lewis, an IT technician at Birchwood Community High School, was found to have downloaded a total of 17,798 indecent images when police raided his home.

But today, Wednesday, the 25-year-old was spared jail at Liverpool Crown Court.

The court heard that Merseyside Police executed a warrant at Lewis’ Liverpool home on Wednesday, October 3, following intelligence received by the force.

Officers seized two laptops, a hard drive and a mobile phone belonging to the defendant.

An analysis of these devices found a total of 17,798 indecent images of children, including 1,056 videos.

Lewis, who attended court with his girlfriend, had also deleted a further 9,341 indecent images and used specialist equipment to conceal his internet use.

Warrington Guardian:

Graham Lewis

He confessed to police during an interview in December, before he ‘became upset and made no further comment’.

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Defence barrister Charles Lander told the court: “He has lost his good character and lost his employment, and he knows he could potentially lose his liberty.”

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Mr Lander also outlined how the defendant had suffered from mental health problems, and plans to enrol on a degree course in journalism and sports psychology.

Judge David Aubrey handed Lewis a 20-month imprisonment suspended for two years after he admitted three counts of making indecent images.

The defendant, who left the dock in tears, was ordered to sign the sex offenders’ registers for the next 10 years and to pay £340 in court costs.

Lewis was also subjected to a rehabilitation activity requirement and a 10-year sexual harm prevention order.