A 70-year-old child sex offender had contact with children three times while staying with a friend, a court heard.

Blackburn magistrates heard the mother of a six-year-old girl noticed he had paid the child particular attention, playing with her and tickling the child.

“The Crown says that was a deliberate visit to an address where he knew children would be present,” said Claire Grant, prosecuting.

“He has then engaged in physical contact with the child.”

Eugene Carberry, of Whittaker Street, Blackburn, pleaded guilty to three breaches of a sexual offences prevention order (SOPO). He was sent on bail to Preston Crown Court for sentence.

Mrs Grant said Carberry was convicted of child sex offences in 1998 which resulted in a 10-year prison sentence. The SOPO was imposed in 2007 as a result of concerns about his behaviour in a supermarket.

Under the terms of the order he is prevented from associating or having any contact with children under the age of 16 or entering any dwelling where a child is present.

She said information was passed to Hertfordshire police raising concerns that a sex offender was visiting a caravan in Barnet where children regularly visited. The owner of the caravan had grand children and in February two of them visited with their father while Carberry was present.

“He made no attempt to remove himself or make it known that this put him in breach of the order,” said Mrs Grant. In August the caravan owner went to visit his daughter-in-law and her three children and took Carberry with him. Mrs Grant said it was during this visit that Carberry had physical contact with the young girl.

At the end of his visit in August he was given a lift to the bus station and there was a child in the car which was again a breach of the order.

Graeme Parkinson, defending, said they were not deliberate breaches of the order and the contact was not unsupervised.