A MAN who thought he was conversing via the internet with a 13-year-old child was actually in contact with the police.

Blackburn magistrates heard Samuel McLachlan attempted to engage in sexual communication with the child and attempted to arrange a meeting with the boy.

McLachlan, 30, of Low Bank, Burnley, pleaded guilty to eight charges involving internet grooming and sexual activity. He was committed in custody to Burnley Crown Court to be sentenced.

Beth Pilling, prosecuting, said it was not the first time McLachlan had committed similar offences.

"In this case he thought he was communicating with a 13-year-old boy but it was in fact the police," said Miss Pilling. "He exposed himself and asked the boy to remove the shots.

"Clearly he was aware he was doing wrong."

Ben Leech, defending, said his client suffered from Asperger's syndrome.

"It would be right to describe him as a very vulnerable individual," said Mr Leech.