Former Derbyshire priest’s child porn shame

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A former Derbyshire priest must face a Crown Court judge to be sentenced for admitting having child porn pictures at a presbytery.

Philip McBrien, aged 58, who served as Priest in Charge at Our Lady and St Thomas of Hereford, in Ilkeston from 1991-92, admitted the offences when he appeared at Nottingham Magistrates’ Court.

Dan Church, prosecuting, told the court that nine of the images were in category A, the most serious.

He said: “Category A includes possession of indecent images of penetrative sexual activity involving children.

“On the guidelines, there is a starting point of 12 months’ imprisonment.”

McBrien’s title was given as Father on the court list with an address of the Holy Cross Presbytery, Watnall Road, Hucknall.

However, when he appeared before the magistrates, he was referred to as Mr McBrien and gave his address as Ruby’s Walk, Newark.

McBrien was ordained as a priest in November 1986.

He served as an assistant priest at St Philip Neri’ Catholic Church, Chesterfield Road South, Mansfield, from 2003-05, before moving to be a sub-dean at Nottingham Cathedral.

Nick Walsh, mitigating, asked for a pre-sentence report and told the court he accepted the case would be handled by a Crown Court judge.

Mr Walsh said: “The guidelines suggest this exceeds the court’s powers.”

The four charges relate to October 5, 2017 at the presbytery on Listowel Crescent, Clifton, Nottingham.

McBrien also admitted being in possession of 65 prohibited images of children.

Adjourning the case to Crown Court for sentencing, magistrates ordered probation officers to compile reports for the judge to study.

Marie Underwood, presiding magistrate, told McBrien: “Our sentencing powers are insufficient for these crimes.

“You are committed to the Crown Court sitting in Nottingham for sentence. We order a pre-sentence report to be prepared.

“You will have to sign the Sex Offenders’ Register forthwith.

“Report to Newark police station, your local police station, within three days to register.

“Failure to do so can result in some sort of penalty.”

McBrien was then released on unconditional bail to attend the Crown Court for sentencing later this month.