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HomeCourtsTeacher who sexually assaulted teenage pupil jailed following NCA investigation

Teacher who sexually assaulted teenage pupil jailed following NCA investigation

A science and technology teacher from North Yorkshire who sexually assaulted one of his pupils has been sentenced to more than nine years following the National Crime Agency (NCA) investigation.

The NCA launched an investigation in November 2021, when Google sent a report of a user storing child abuse material on their platform via the National Center of Missing and Exploited Children in the US.

After NCA investigators identified the user as Mark Langford, 55, they immediately moved in to arrest him at his then address in Beccles, Suffolk.

Mark Langford has been sentenced to more than nine years of imprisonment.

Further enquiries established that he had groomed and sexually abused a 15-year-old pupil he taught at a school in Lowestoft between 2004 and 2006.

NCA officers recovered a letter Langford wrote to the victim in April last year, instructing her on what to say if the investigating officer questioned her regarding his offending.

He said: “Before you talk to him, please remember that it is his job to convict me – please do not give him any accidental ammunition against me. You can tell him you know I’m a porn addict, and that I was arrested for having indecent images of children. Don’t forget the “arrested for” bit – don’t say I did it, or that I confessed to you, because that might drag you into court as a witness. I don’t know if it will, but that’s not a question I dare ask him.”

Before being arrested Langford told officers: “It’s all in there, I know what you’re looking for, I’ve made a mistake and ruined everything”.

Extreme images of children found in his devices

Five of his devices were forensically examined and found to contain a total of 2,718 indecent images of children in categories A-C (A being the most severe). A further 199 prohibited images and 109 extreme images were also found.

Langford had exchanged images on various peer to peer sites and accessed a cloud-based storage platform used by paedophiles to trade child sexual abuse material.

Officers also recovered a number of online chat logs in which he spoke with other like-minded individuals about sexual abuse.

These included conversations about child rape, encouraging others to sexually abuse their children and the levels of pain and humiliation that needed to be inflicted on women and children to satisfy his sexual demands. He also gave tips to others on where to find child sexual abuse material online.

Langford taught at Suffolk and Norfolk secondary schools from 1996 until just after his arrest, at which point he was employed by a free schools trust which runs schools in Beccles, Bury St Edmunds and Saxmundham.

“He has not only abused my body but my mind too”

Ipswich Crown Court

He appeared at Ipswich Crown Court on 10 July this year where he pleaded guilty to a number of charges including indecent assault, indecency with a child, perverting the cause of justice, indecent images of children offences (making, possession and distribution) and possession of extreme pornographic images.

Langford was sentenced to nine years and two months imprisonment and given an indefinite sexual harm prevention order at the same court on 25 September.

In an impact statement read before the court, the victim said: “His manipulation, deceit and devious nature unnerves me as he is not the man he presented himself as for many years.

“What Mark needs to grasp is that I am thoroughly appalled and disgusted by his actions and haunted by the abuse I suffered at his hands…He disgusts me to the core and I am haunted by nightmares of the confessions he told me.

“I still feel I am carrying around his filthy secret that he expected me to keep for him. This repulses me that he thought I would prevent the course of justice …

“I am appalled, insulted and disgusted by everything he has told me and these confessions will stay with me for a long time. He has not only abused my body but my mind too.”

NCA Operations Manager Holly Triggs said: “Mark Langford was a cowardly and scheming offender.

“Not only did he abuse his position of trust, he asked his victim to stay quiet about his offending and the horrific conversations he had with other paedophiles online.

“The NCA works relentlessly to protect children from sexual abuse and ensure that those who abuse them face justice.”

Langford was dismissed by his employer in January last year.

(Source: NCA)

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