A MAN who sent naked photos of himself to an under-age girl over a webcam and encouraged her to do the same was snared by police officers nearly 400 miles away.

Strathclyde Police were looking into sexual allegations in a separate investigation during which the girl’s computer was examined, revealing the contact with Simon Smith, of Five Locks Road, Pontnewydd.

Gwent Police went to his home in August 2011 and took his computer and mobile phone in for analysis, which led to his arrest two months later.

Cardiff Crown Court heard the 47-year-old used chatrooms and file-sharing sites, talking to underage girls in a mostly sexual way.

A relationship developed with one of the girls and both parties sent pictures across to one another, including ones where she was topless.

In many of the conversations, Smith called himself ‘daddy’ while encouraging her to perform sexual acts over the webcam for his pleasure.

The examination of his computer also found 29 extreme pornographic images, some which showed sexual activity between humans and animals.

Defending, Andrew Twomlow, said his client was previously a man of good character who is the main carer for his elderly mother.

He said the online conversations took place over an eight-day period and the girl was an entirely willing participant.

He added the extreme images were stored on Smith’s old computer and were of some “considerable age”.

Smith pleaded guilty to five counts of engaging in sexual activity in the presence of a child, four counts of making indecent pictures of a child, one count of causing or inciting a child to engage in sexual activity and one count of possessing extreme pornographic images.

Judge Patrick Curran QC said he was prepared to suspend a 12-month prison sentence for two years, because Smith’s mother was entirely dependent on him.

The judge added such offences are “a matter of great concern to all rightthinking people”.