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Rhian Desouza who made child porn images is spared prison

Rhian Desouza, 43, pictured at Swansea Crown Court today, has been spared jail after admitting making sexual images of children

A primary school headteacher caught with x-rated pictures of her teenage lesbian lover has avoided jail but banned from teaching for life.

Rhian Desouza, 43, was handed a two-year community order at Swansea Crown Court after pleading guilty to making indecent images of children in August.

The court heard she had a secret fling with the girl, who was a willing partner.

But although their relationship was legal, it is against the law to take or make indecent images of people under 18. 

Desouza, who was suspended from her role as head of Gellionnen Primary School in Clydach, Swansea, received two such images via Snapchat on her Samsung phone, which police were able to recover using specialist technology.    

The court heard her career is in ruins and she will never teach again.

Judge Paul Thomas told her: ‘Your reputation and standing in the community, once sky high, has been irretrievable damaged.

‘I have no doubt you will lose your job, your status and career. I can see no way you will ever teach again.’

Desouza, of Llanelli, South Wales, shook uncontrollably in the dock as she was ordered to sign the sex offenders register for five years.

She was given a two-year community order and told to attend a rehabilitation course and carry out 200 hours unpaid work.

Desouza was head at the 190-pupil Gellionnen primary school in Swansea, for five years up until her suspension earlier this year.

The photographs did not relate to any child past or present at the school.

Prosecutor Carina Hughes said: ‘Desouza embarked on a relationship with the girl who was 16 at the time.

‘She was not under the age of consent and the relationship was consensual.

‘The girl sent her two naked photographs of herself on Snapchat. They dropped off her mobile in a short period.’

But police became aware of the photographs and were able to find them on the teacher’s phone history.

One of the photographs was category A, the most serious, the other was Category C.

Desouza, pictured, was suspended from Gellionnen Primary School in Clydach, Swansea, following her arrest 

Desouza, pictured, was suspended from Gellionnen Primary School in Clydach, Swansea, following her arrest 

The girl’s mother told the court that the impact on her daughter was immense and she had become ‘socially isolated’ since the photographs were discovered.

Georgina Buckley, defending, said: ‘This was borne out of a consensual and loving relationship.

‘There was no breach of trust and this was a lawful relationship,

HOW THE LAW WORKS 

Rhian Desouza’s relationship with her 16-year-old female lover was legal, because she was over the age of consent.

There was also no breach of trust because the girl had never been a pupil of Desouza or attended a school she had worked at.

But the law was broken because the Protection of Children Act 1978 prohibits sexual images being made or circulated of anyone aged under 18.

Thus receiving the images via Snapchat meant she had committed the offense. 

Desouza admitted the crime at the first opportunity and her barrister told the court the case was an ‘anomaly’ because of the unusual circumstances. 

‘The law is that you can have a sexual relationship with someone over 16 but you can’t take indecent photographs of them. It is an anomaly.’

Judge Thomas said he when heard about the case he thought only a prison sentence can be justified.

But he told Swansea Crown Court: ‘My first reaction was that a prison sentence was inevitable for a headteacher to be found with indecent images of a child.

‘Now i am aware of the facts, the scenario is a very different one.’

‘The girl was 16 and it was a consensual relationship which is entirely lawful.

‘Whether the relationship was wise, decent or appropriate is another matter altogether.

‘But this is not a court of morality, it is a court of law.’

Desouza broke down in tears and was hugged by family members as she left the court.

The primary school and Swansea council said in a joint statement: ‘We would like to reassure parents that the court proceedings do not relate to any pupil, past or present, at any school the individual has taught at.

‘As soon as we were made aware of the investigation by police she was suspended and remains so.

She was headteacher at Gellionnen Primary School, pictured, for five years

She was headteacher at Gellionnen Primary School, pictured, for five years

‘The school’s Governing Body continues to undertake the required and necessary internal procedures, but would like take this opportunity to thank parents, carers and the wider community of the school for the overwhelming support they have offered both staff and the school since the beginning of the new term.’

But parents at the school were outraged at being kept in the dark about the charges against the well-respected head.

Some even sent flowers to the school believing Desouza was ill and unaware she was suspended.

One father with a child at the school said: ‘She is lucky to have got off – if it had been a male teacher i think he would be behind bars now.

‘We place so much trust in teachers especially the head of a school who should set high standards,

‘Desouza’s behaviour was illegal and immoral in my eyes – i hope the judge is right and she never teaches again.’ 

The teacher, pictured right at court, was handed 200 hours of unpaid work and told to sign the sex offenders' register for five years

The teacher, pictured right at court, was handed 200 hours of unpaid work and told to sign the sex offenders’ register for five years

The married mother-of-two has also been described as a ‘pillar of the community’.

Her husband Mike has worked as a digital photographer and owns a media company called Skaface Ltd, he is a keen runner and Desouza is involved in a local choir.

He has worked in TV and cinema as a production accounts.

On social media he lists his credits as Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again and The Mummy.

Desouza, of Llanelli, Carmarthenshire, has been head of the Welsh-speaking school – formally known as Ysgol Gynradd Gymraeg Gellionnen – for more than five years.

It has 187 full-time pupils aged three to 11 including a nursery.

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk


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