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Colne sex offender living secretly at guest house jailed
A SEX offender was secretly living at a Colne guest house, keeping the owner in the dark and deliberately flouting a court order, a court heard.
Allan Morton, 28, was on the sex offenders' register and was supposed to tell police of any change of address within three days. Morton, who had now breached the notification requirements six times, claimed he had been living 'informally' at the Ashfield Guest House, for which he had a key, and had been coming and going without anybody knowing.
Burnley Crown Court heard Morton had been put on the register for 10 years in December 2007 when he was jailed for 12 months after being convicted of sexual activity with a female child under 16. He had been given a suspended jail term for the fifth breach last August, and is now behind bars for a total of 24 weeks, for ignoring the order yet again.
The defendant, of no fixed address, had admitted failing to comply with the order and had been committed for sentence by Pennine magistrates.
Silvia Dacre, prosecuting, said last August, Morton had received 12 weeks in prison, suspended for six months by magistrates for failing to comply.
He had been living at the guest house and last October 9, he notified a move to Chapelhouse Road, Nelson. Police made visits in January and an occupant said he had never been there. In February, he registered a move back to the guest house and police did a check on February 5, but the guest house said he had not been there since October.
Miss Dacre said when the defendant was arrested, he claimed that for the first two weeks in February, he had been living at the guest house “informally”
He told police he had managed to obtain a key and had been coming and going without anybody knowing.
The prosecutor said the previous breach had been committed between June and August last year. The defendant had ‘signed on’ to notify police of his address in June 2011, was supposed to notify annually, but had not done so by August 9. He was arrested at Ashfield Guest House and claimed he didn't realise he had to sign on every year.
Martin Hackett, for Morton, said the breaches were not serious. He had not committed any further sex offences.