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Monday 10 December 2018

Scappaticci avoids prison term over extreme porn

Freddie Scappaticci
Freddie Scappaticci

A man widely named as the Army's notorious IRA agent Stakeknife has avoided jail after admitting two counts of possessing extreme pornography.

Freddie Scappaticci (72) appeared briefly before Westminster Magistrates' Court in central London to admit the charges, which related to at least 329 images, including a number involving animals.

Wearing a blue fleece and green tracksuit bottoms, Scappaticci entered his pleas.

Chief magistrate Emma Arbuthnot sentenced Scappaticci to three months in custody, suspended for 12 months.

The magistrate said: "You have not been before the court for 50 years - and that's good character in my book.

"I can see you are not a well man at all - you have very serious health issues - and that you live a lonely life."

Scappaticci has always strongly denied he is Stakeknife, a high-ranking military mole who reputedly led the republican organisation's "nutting squad", an internal security unit which interrogated and murdered suspected spies during the Northern Ireland conflict.

He was arrested last January over offences including murder and abduction, but was released on bail.

Depression

Westminster Magistrates' Court heard Scappaticci told police he was not sexually interested in animals and preferred women with big breasts.

He told them he was "not doing anyone any real harm", and said he had depression.

The court heard that Scappaticci used his laptop to search for areas of interests, including "cars, the British Army, maps, combat, football, politics", but that he also searched for pornography.

He conducted searches on 13 different days between November 2015 and January 2018.

Scappaticci was ordered to pay a £100 (€112) victim surcharge and £85 (€95) costs.

He was convicted after material was seized as part of Operation Kenova.

Bedfordshire Police Chief Constable Jon Boutcher, who leads the investigation for Operation Kenova, said the conviction came about as a result of "material recovered during a search conducted by the Kenova team".

"This result is an indication that wherever criminal behaviour is identified during my investigation, evidence will be presented for the purposes of prosecution," he said.

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