A former school worker has been jailed after making and sharing indecent images of children.

Jamie Hedges, 26, of Butlers Cross, Aylesbury, appeared before Aylesbury Crown Court on Friday, March 22.

He had previously pleaded guilty on three counts of making indecent images of children and three counts of distributing indecent photographs of children, as well as a count each of possessing prohibited images of children and possessing an extreme pornographic image.

The court heard that the defendant took photos of children as young as age five in intimate situations, and also encouraged children to send him indecent photos via Snapchat. He then distributed these online.

Sentencing Hedges, Judge Hassan Khan said the images were shared on websites where they possibly attracted a "high number" of viewers.

The judge told him: "No doubt, the fact that you've done this is going to have potential long-term consequences not just for the [children] concerned, but also for their parents."

Hedges was previously employed as a playworker at a school, running activities for small children.

Prior to his arrest in June 2023, the defendant shared over 1,000 indecent images online. Of these, it is believed that 31 were produced by the defendant himself.

Defence barrister Michael Phillips said Hedges was "shocked and disgusted" by his own behaviour. He highlighted that his client had pleaded guilty at an early opportunity, shortly after being arrested.

Hedges has been diagnosed with autism, and has attributed his offending to a pornography addiction - which ultimately escalated to viewing and producing illegal material.

Mr Phillips said: "It's likely that he would suffer more than most in a custodial setting, given his various difficulties in life."

Judge Khan rebuffed defence requests for a non-custodial sentence.

Instead, he jailed Hedges for two years and two months. He is set to serve half this time on licence, and will be made to register as a sex offender. He is also being made subject to a Sexual Harm Prevention Order.

The judge described Hedges' exploitation of children as the "stuff of nightmares."

He said: "No-one knows how far those photos have been onwardly disseminated."