A CONVICTED sex offender claimed he had wiped the internet history off his devices because he feared other residents at the hostel where he was living might discover the truth about his past.

Blackburn magistrates were told people were asking questions and Joseph Edward Ollman feared for his own safety.

Ollman, 46, of Islington House, Great Bolton Street, Blackburn, pleaded guilty to breaching a Sexual Offences Prevention Order (SOPO) by deleting the browsing history on his mobile phone and a tablet.

He was remanded on bail for the preparation of a pre-sentence report.

Andy Robinson, prosecuting, said Ollman had been jailed in September 2013 for 15 offences of making indecent images of children.

He was made subject to a SOPO for 10 years.

"A condition of the order is that he has to make available to police any internet browsing history and he is not to delete that history," said Mr Robison. "When police spoke to him they asked him to show them the internet history on his devices and he confirmed he had deleted it all a week earlier."

Jonathan Taylor, defending, said Ollman had been living at the Islington for three years.

"It is hostel type accommodation and many of the residents are regular offenders," said Mr Taylor. "My client has realised of late that residents suspected he had been before the courts previously for child related offences. He was fearful of retribution."

He said Ollman did not feel safe and people were trying to find out as much information about him as possible so they could find out what previous convictions he had.

"That was why he decided to delete the history," said Mr Taylor. "I am not aware of anything that has been recovered from the devices to suggest he had been looking at anything he shouldn't have been looking at."