A man was confronted by paedophile hunters in Swindon town centre yesterday evening, after arranging to meet a 14-year-old girl for sex.
The man, who lives in Swindon, was arrested outside Primark on Regent Street at around 6.30pm, on 22 June, on suspicion on meeting a child following grooming.
The 28-year-old father-of-one is alleged to have arranged to meet who he believed was a 14-year-old girl, but was instead confronted by an undercover journalist from the newly formed south west England-based organisation Western Hunters.
A spokesperson for Western Hunters said: “At around 6.30pm yesterday evening, 22 June, one of our undercover journalists – often known to the public as paedophile hunters – met a 28-year-old father outside Primark in Swindon town centre.
“He was there to meet one of our decoys, who was representing a 14-year-old girl, following a conversation on a meet-up app earlier in the day.
“Subsequently, our undercover journalist detained the man (without any the use of physical force) for meeting a child following grooming under Section 15 of the Sexual Offences Act 2003. Although he did not meet an actual child on this occasion, the offence still stands.
“A short time later, Wiltshire Police arrived at the scene and our evidence was handed to the officers attending. The man was then arrested for the aforementioned offence and taken into custody at Gablecross police station.
“We are unable to comment further or give more detailed information on this case while a police investigation is ongoing.”
Wiltshire Police have confirmed that a man was arrested following the sting.
A police spokesperson said: “A 28-year-old man from Swindon was arrested on suspicion of attempting to meet a girl under 16 years of age following grooming, after an incident in Swindon town centre at around 6.30pm this evening (Thursday 22 June 2017).
“He has been taken to Gablecross police station where he remains for questioning.”
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