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article imageBritish police vow to try and identify victims of sexual assaults

By Gemma Fox     Oct 1, 2009 in Crime
British detectives working on a sickening case of several sexual offences have vowed to try and identify the victims of Vanessa George, a Plymouth, UK, nursery worker who today pleaded guilty to a string of sexual assaults on children.
Vanessa George did not act alone in the case that police themselves described as "devilish". Angela Allen and Colin Blanchard, who were also involved in the assaults also pleaded guilty today.
George, who met the other two on line, was urged by the judge to name the children she had assaulted and do the "decent thing".
Parents of the children who went to the nursery "were sick to the stomach" a spokeswoman for the group of parents said,
George has so far refused to identify her victims, despite frequent questioning, Detective Inspector Costa Nassaris from Devon and Cornwall Police said, "We've interviewed her four or five times, and we've made it a priority of ours to ask her about the identification of the victims but at this stage she hasn't given us the name of any child."
He also added, "... the judge has done everything he possibly can to make it quite clear to her that he expects her to provide the information which she must have."
DI Nassaris also said that because of the "nature of the images themselves" experts were unable to identify the children filmed.
He warned, "Work is ongoing, we've not given up on that but the probability I would have to say is very low that we will identify any of these children."
Vanessa George, who had worked at Little Ted's Nursery in the Efford area of Plymouth for three years, was a "well liked member of the community" said Kathy Hancock, spokeswoman for the parents.
Hancock said, "She was very friendly with the parents, she would babysit for them in their homes, and she was in a position of trust that she completely violated."
The case was described as "deeply distressing and disturbing" by UK Children's Secretary, Ed Balls.
Vanessa George, Angela Allen and Colin Blanchard, all aged 39, had never met in person before their appearance at Bristol Crown Court today. They all met on the social networking site Facebook, although it's not known when they first met. They are due to be sentenced next month.
Approximately 30 parents were present in the court and wept as the guilty pleas were entered.
While giving their pleas, Blanchard showed no reaction, Allen cried and George simply hung her head.
After an investigation by officers from three English police forces, Greater Manchester, Nottinghamshire and Devon and Cornwall the trio were arrested in June. The abuse of the children began last September.
The trio used mobile phones to record the assaults and shared them via text messages and email.
Allen, from Nottingham, pleaded guilty to four child sexual assaults and one count of distributing an indecent image. Blanchard, from Rochdale, pleaded guilty to seventeen child pornography counts and two sexual assaults on children.
George admitted seven sexual assaults on children and six counts of distributing and making indecent pictures of children.
The trio were guilty of child abuse in its most "horrific and devilish form" said Detective Superintendent Adrian Pearson of Nottinghamshire Police. He said, "Those three individuals have shared quite willingly and freely images, texts, fantasies of the most serious level you could imagine."
Describing their crimes as beyond comprehension, Ann Reddrop, from the Crime Prosecution Service said, "These three individuals each acted in a way which ordinary people will find hard to understand. They showed total disregard for the lives of their victims, their own families and those they worked with, all of whom have been left devastated by these crimes."
The trio were warned that they faced substantial prison sentences said Judge John Royce who has adjourned sentencing for reports.
Directing his comments to George's lawyer, Judge Royce said, "Your client must know it seems to me who she has abused and who she has not. If I were a parent, I would want to know whether my child was abused or not."
He said that George should co-operate with police and help identify the victims of abuse in the photographs.
Describing the trio Detective Inspector Tony Creely of Manchester Police's sexual crimes unit said they "were as bad as each other". He went on to say, "Blanchard, George and Allen sent thousands of messages between each of them. Blanchard expressed love for each of the women, and they would reciprocate. They would discuss sexual matters of a crude and gross nature and the abuse of children in the texts and e-mails. All of them were getting gratification from the texts and seeing who could have the worst idea."
While Vanessa George maintains her silence about the identities it leaves parents of all the children who attended Little Ted's Nursery in turmoil as they wonder whether their child was a victim of the abuse or not.
More about Plymouth, Sex offences, Guilty
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