A FORMER police officer has been handed a lengthy jail sentence after admitting sexual offences with young girls.

Stuart Bradshaw, 34, of Overleigh Crescent in Hawarden, was sentenced at Mold Crown Court to eight years behind bars for sexual offences with girls under the age of 16 between 2011 and 2014.

This included instigating two girls – who cannot be named for legal reasons – to engage in sexual activity over a period of three years.

Bradshaw asked the girls to perform various sexual acts as well as watching him carry out a sex act on a webcam.

The prosecution, Elen Owen, told the court how Bradshaw – a former officer with North Wales Police – would pose online as an 18-year-old to chat with the then teenage girls to speak in online chatrooms for several years.

Bradshaw’s victim would spend several hours on these chats and speak to him through the night, sometimes missing school in order to do so.

In these online chats, Bradshaw – under the name of Simon – encouraged one of the girls to carry out various sexual acts at the age of 13. Ms Owen told the judge how he would also have the girl watch as he carried out a sex act.

The prosecution said the girl in question says in her eyes they were in love and saw them as boyfriend and girlfriend – something that Bradshaw encouraged. However, he also told her that she should not wear makeup or be friends with other boys on social media.

The court heard the pair did try to meet in London when she was 14 years old but this was stopped when the girl’s father learned of the trip while she was on the train to the capital city and threatened to call the police if she did not return home.

When the girl turned 15, she pressed Bradshaw for the truth about his age, when he lied further and ‘admitted’ that he was 21 – despite being much older. She pressed him further after seeing a different name on his driver’s licence when he confessed to being in his late 20s at the time.

They did meet physically at a bus stop near a police station in Essex when the girl was 16 but Bradshaw left after 20 minutes.

At this point, the court heard that the girl recalled an argument with Bradshaw when she was 13 after she was accused by him of having kissed a boy and demanded that to make up for this she was to get a friend to perform a sexual act for him.

In the company of one another, the second girl performed these acts for Bradshaw.

The court was told how the first girl received a friend request from another man on social media and spoke about this to Bradshaw who was keen for her to accept him saying it was one of his friends.

It later turned out to be Bradshaw using a different account name. She chatted with him for about a year more, but the sexual acts stopped and conversations fizzled out when she met and started a relationship with a boy her own age, the court heard.

The prosecution said the first of his victims became aware that Bradshaw had appeared before a court for charges of harassment after making an online search in 2017 and contacted police with her complaints.

Police were able to speak with the second girl involved with Bradshaw and confirmed details of what went on between them during their investigation.

When arrested in June 2018 for these offences, Bradshaw gave no comment answers in interviews by officers.

Nothing of ‘evidential value’ was recovered when he was arrested on these counts, the court heard. However, when he was previously arrested on counts of harassment of an ex-partner, his phone and a mobile phone had been seized and was reviewed in the light of the new case where he was found to be in possession of the girl’s phone number and email address.

Further investigation was able to link Bradshaw to the online alias he used to abuse these girls – including his shift patterns when he was a serving police officer in the North Wales region for four years. Bank accounts revealed he also paid for a trip to London which matched with the victim’s trip to meet him.

The defence, Andrew Green, said that Bradshaw was under no illusion of the serious nature of the offence and knew that a lengthy custodial sentence was inevitable.

Judge Niclas Parry gave his sentence and said that Bradshaw’s behaviour was “completely depraved” and went against his duty as a “trusted” police officer to protect when in the privacy of his own home he “took advantage of two young girls”.

As well as the jail sentence, Bradshaw was handed an indefinite sexual harm prevention order and must sign the sex offenders register.