Paul Rajasegaram, 33, boasted “I teach kids” in chats with other paedophiles and in one message showed an image of the young son of a celebrity, who he spoke about raping, Southwark Crown Court heard.
Rajasegaram, who appeared on The Voice while it was a BBC talent show, worked as a singing teacher at an east London school and also took lessons at a performing arts school on weekends.
On Wednesday, Judge Gregory Perrins jailed Rajasegaram for a total of 27 months and handed him a sexual harm prevention order, after he had pleaded guilty to three counts of making indecent images of children and two counts of distributing such images.
“Compared to some cases, you were not in possession of a hugely significant quantity of material,” the judge told him.
“What you were viewing, sharing and storing were images, however, of real instances of horrific sexual abuse.”
He added: “At the time, you were a secondary school teacher. What is especially concerning is that you readily and enthusiastically engaged in conversations about the sexual abuse of children who were in your care.
“The order I am going to impose today means you will never be able to teach again.”
The judge said Rajasegaram was “obviously someone with a sexual interest in children” but there was “no suggestion” he had ever tried to act on it.
Prosecutor Leo Seelig said Rajasegaram was arrested at a school in London on January 4, 2018, by officers from the National Crime Agency (NCA).
The investigation began after Rajasegaram, using his online alias, said on a known chatroom for paedophiles that he found two of his pupils “really cute”.
An Apple laptop was seized in a search of Rajasegaram’s home in Marylebone, central London, which when analysed was found to contain indecent pictures and videos, including 11 of the worst kind, including a video of an eight-year-old boy being raped.
Rajasegaram, dressed in a smart dark suit, white shirt and dark tie, blew a kiss to his mother, who was sat in the public gallery with his partner, as he was taken down to the cells.
NCA Operations Manager Martin Ludlow said: “Rajasegaram was a significant risk to children, and as a teacher had access to young boys whom he was sexually attracted to.
“He sought out child abuse images and exchanged them with others. It is easy to forget that behind every sexual abuse image is a child whose life has been torn apart by exploitation, with men like Rajasegaram fuelling the demand for this horrendous material.”
The court heard Rajasegaram had sought to address his offending through the Lucy Faithfull Foundation child protection charity, which helps internet offenders or those at risk of committing a crime.
His barrister, Liam Loughlin, said: “He does accept he has a sexual interest in children, he does want help.”
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