A MAN who downloaded indecent images of young children, described by a judge as 'particularly depraved', has escaped an immediate prison sentence.

Timothy Conyers, aged 40, of Priory Gardens, Spetisbury, appeared at Bournemouth Crown Court on Friday, July 16.

He had admitted possession of a number of indecent still and moving images, some featuring children as young as two and some involving beastiality.

Judge Robert Pawson, who sentenced unemployed Conyers to 18 months imprisonment, suspended for two years, warned the defendant that if he "were to darken the door of this court again, he would go straight to prison."

Conyers, who had no previous convictions, was handed a rehabilitation order, fined all of his £600 savings, made the subject of a 10 year sexual harm prevention order and ordered to pay £275 costs with victim surcharge.

Prosecutor Sadie Rizzo told the court how police raided Conyer's home address in March last year, following information passed on by the National Crime Agency.

A mobile phone and customised computer plus hard drive were seized by officers.

Upon examination the devices were found to contain 46 category A images of children, 46 category B images, 62 category C images and 129 extreme pornographic images.

In initial interview Conyers told police the images were not his, and that he worked at a hub and others had access to his computer.

In a later interview he answered 'no comment' to all questions.

Describing the pictures as "revolting" and "particularly depraved", Judge Pawson told Conyers that it was only that he had a duty to protect public safety that he wasn't sending him to prison immediately.

Pre-sentence reports ordered before Friday's hearing suggested Conyers, of previous good character, would benefit from rehabilitation. Part of his sentence is to complete 50 rehabilitation requirement days.

Judge Pawson also told Conyers that just because he hadn't committed the physical abuse himself "doesn't mean you are absolved of responsibility."

The judge said Conyers, and men like him, are "directly responsible for the hideous sexual abuse of children as young as two or three."