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Ellesmere Port paedophile caught out by vigilante group Dark Justice

Richard Hewitt, of Old Chester Road, has been locked up for two years

Northumbria Police/PA Wire
Paedophile Richard Hewitt, 40, has been jailed for two years

A paedophile from Great Sutton caught out by Dark Justice tried to smash his phone to destroy evidence and fought 'like a pitbull' when he was confronted in the street, one of the campaigners said.

Forty-year-old Richard Hewitt, of Old Chester Road, drove to Newcastle thinking he was going to meet a 13-year-old girl after he made contact with the profile on a teen chat room.

He had asked the girl called Jessie for naked selfies and sent her Whatsapp messages asking for sex, telling her "I will be your first".

Hewitt, who has been subject of a Sexual Offences Prevention Order (SOPO) since 2007, did not realise the profile was a fake, set up by Dark Justice.

The group has been running for two years this month and has led to 64 people being arrested.

When Hewitt arrived in Newcastle in August, the group blocked in his car to stop him leaving.

Neil Pallister, prosecuting, told Newcastle Crown Court: "It's fair to say the defendant became agitated and denied wrong doing.

"He tried to smash or damage his own mobile phone."

Criminal record

Hewitt, who has 26 offences on his record, admitted attempting to meet a child following sexual grooming and breaching his SOPO.

Judge Robert Adams jailed him for two years, saying Hewitt had a "bad record for sexual offending".

Hewitt appeared in court via a prison videolink.

During the sentencing, he mumbled "I'm sorry" and "I need help" until the judge told him to stop interrupting.

Outside court, Dark Justice activist 'Scott' said he and his counterpart 'Callum' were injured in a struggle during the consultation, although police did not charge Hewitt with any offence of violence.

He said: "We were on a chat room and he popped up and straight away messaging us, saying 'I would like to meet you'.

"He travelled up the same day."

'Flipped out'

One of the campaigners suffered a bite injury to the arm and the other a suspected dislocated thumb.

Scott said: "He snapped his own phone and bent it like a banana, trying to destroy the evidence.

"He went crazy, he absolutely flipped out.

"He looks like a chihuahua, but he fought like a pitbull.

"He tried to take my phone. I was a bit shocked at the time. I wasn't scared, more angry.

"We have been spat on, but never anything like this.

"This is the 64th arrest and 34th conviction - we will have been going for two years on October 30, and nothing like this has happened before."



David Holmes
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