A CORNWALL man who was caught trying to communicate sexually with a police decoy has appeared at a court in Cornwall for sentencing

Michael Ryan Williams, 35, of Pengover Parc, Redruth, attempted to communicate sexually with a child while using an internet-based chat app.

As it turns out, however, Williams had actually been communicating with the fake profile of a 12-year-old girl which had been set up by undercover police.

The offence took place on October 7 2019 and the court heard how Williams had begun to message the decoy and the chat quickly became 'highly sexualised.'

Williams told the decoy that he wanted to have both oral and penetrative sex as well as wanting pictures of her and her genitalia while telling the fake profile it was "our secret."

The conversation then migrated on to the popular app Snapchat and Williams again requested pictures of the young girl he thought he was talking to.

The court also heard how it was "extremely clear that this 'girl' was underage."

The next day, Williams sent the profile a picture of his erect penis.

On January 29 2020, a phone was seized from Williams.

During his police interview, Williams claimed he had been sleeping rough, was caught up in drink and drugs and that this "Wasn't something he would have done" claiming he had "no interest in children."

Williams originally pleaded not guilty to the charge, however, on the morning of his trial, changed his plea to guilty.

Before sentencing Williams, Judge Stephen Carr told the defendant: "You pleaded guilty on the morning of your trial to attempted sexual communication with a child.

"You created a profile and texted her, knowing full well that she was a child.

"You sent her a picture of your penis and tried to get her to send pictures of herself.

"You were arrested and, until the morning of your trial, denied the charge."

Judge Carr also told Williams how he had tried to minimise what he had done and shown no remorse for his actions while also noting that he posed a 'high risk of harm to children.'

He continued: "On the other side of the equation, you are a man of previous good character.

"I also take on board that you have children of your own and that contact is important to both you and them.

"I believe that there is no realistic possibility of rehabilitation."

Williams was sentenced to eight months imprisonment followed by 12 months on license after his release.

He will also be subject to a sexual harm prevention order for five years and made to sign a sex offenders register.