Truck driver's vile fantasies of babies, dogs and horses exposed

David Owen mugshot
-Credit: (Image: Gwent Police)


A truck driver shared a video of a five-year-old child being raped and built up a vile collection of images showing child, horse and dog abuse. David Owen, from Caerphilly, claimed the online activity started with him seeking a partner for swinging but ended up "snowballing" into fantasies of baby rape.

Prosecutor Alex Greenwood told Cardiff Crown Court that police raided the 41-year-old's home at 5.02am on December 20, 2022, and found him inside with his then-partner. When officers explained they had received information about Owen's internet activity, he admitted he had images of bestiality involving a horse but claimed the material had "nothing to do with children".

But when officers seized his iPhone they found 24 indecent images of children in category A — which is the most serious category — as well as 19 in category B, 35 in category C, and 43 'prohibited' non-photographic pictures. He also had 383 extreme pornographic images which involved animal abuse. This material included a "sadistic" image of someone performing an oral sex act on a dog, the court heard.

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Mr Greenwood said the children in the images were as young as six months old. Police also discovered a video, sent by Owen to one of his contacts, which showed the rape of a five-year-old who was in "discernible distress". His online searches included terms such as "paedo lives matter" and "young teens". His username on one chat network was "Paedo for kids, babies and toddlers" and messages showed he had discussed the rape of one child who was known to him. He had unsuccessfully attempted to hide the images on his phone, the court heard.

Owen, of Bryn Rhedyn in Caerphilly, admitted distributing an indecent image and five counts of possession of indecent, extreme and prohibited images. He had no previous convictions. His barrister Ben Walters said: "He is a man who at the time of the offending was seeking solace in the internet and trying to find a partner, initially to engage in an adult relationship with him and his then-wife, but he concedes there was then a time when he became involved in chats relating to the abuse of children. He struggles to come to terms with why he went down that path some two years ago when, prior to that, he'd had no thoughts whatsoever of that type, and he is disgusted at the way this all snowballed."

Mr Walters argued that his client "didn't have an appreciation" of the victim in each image, but Judge Carl Harrison interrupted: "How can he not have had an appreciation that behind each one is a child being raped?" The barrister responded that his client now has a better understanding, having "reflected on his behaviour". Calling for a suspended sentence, he added: "His marriage has regrettably broken down, which is perhaps of no surprise, but the defendant has continued to try to make himself better and has continued to work in his employment as a truck driver."

The judge noted the "distress and pain" of the children in the material and the fact that most were younger than 10. He imposed a jail term of two years and two months, of which Owen will serve half in custody. He will be subject to a ten-year sexual harm prevention order and under requirements to inform police of his address and other details. Following release he must pay a £228 victim services surcharge.