Huckle parents 'begged police to take son away'

Central Criminal Court stock

The parents of Britain's worst paedophile were so upset at finding out about their son's horrific abuse of children in Malaysia they begged police to take him away, a court heard.

Loner Richard Huckle, 30, has admitted an unprecedented number of child sex offences and faces multiple life sentences at the Old Bailey.

He masqueraded as a devout Christian and English teacher to gain access to up to 200 children as young as six months old from poor Christian communities in Kuala Lumpur over a period of nine years.

The freelance photographer, from Ashford in Kent, began the abuse on a gap year to south east Asia at the age of 19.

He went on to post a stream pictures and video of himself raping his young victims which were shared worldwide on the dark web.

He even set up a crowd funding enterprise inviting other paedophiles to pay Bitcoins for access to images and was in the process of publishing a paedophile's guide to abusing children in poverty-stricken areas, the court heard.

In discussions online, he bragged: "Impoverished kids are definitely much easier to seduce than middle class Western kids."

Acting on information, Huckle was arrested by the National Crime Agency when he touched down at Gatwick airport en route to spend Christmas at home with his family in 2014.

Prosecutor Brian O'Neill QC said Huckle's computer equipment was seized and he was bailed on condition he return to his parents' home.

Officers had also searched the home of Huckle's parents.

He refused to answer officers' questiones, but the next day his mother asked him about the allegations and he admitted he had sex with children aged between three and 13.

Mr O'Neill said: "His mother was both extremely upset and extremely angry. She and his father called the police and asked them to take their son away.

"Both have made witness statements in support of this prosecution."

Huckle refused to give officers passwords to his encrypted computer, but they were still able to uncover more than 20,000 indecent images of children.

As well as the draft of Huckle's paedophile manual, they found a "Pedopoints" ledger in which he awarded himself marks for acts of depravity with children.

A total of 191 children were mentioned in Huckle's scorecard.

However, officers were unable to crack the passwords to more encrypted files on Huckle's laptop, which are believed to hide "numerous" indecent images.

Some of the secret files contain the names of a large number of unknown potential victims, the court heard.

Huckle has admitted 71 child sex offences, including multiple rapes, against 23 identified children aged between six months and 12 years old.

Twenty two of the charges carry life sentences.

A further 20 charges will lie on court file when he is sentenced by Judge Peter Rook QC tomorrow.