Two teenage girls who abducted a toddler from a Newcastle shopping centre and took her to a nearby park with “evil intent” have been sentenced to three years in a youth custody unit.
The girls, aged 13 and 14, stole dummies, baby milk and a bottle before luring the toddler away from her mother with lollies and Coca-Cola in a busy Primark store.
They then took her by train to a park several kilometres away, where she was found by police three and a half hours later, according to the BBC.
While the girl was unharmed, a Newcastle Crown Court judge said there had been intent, planning and enticement.
The search history on the younger kidnappers’ tablet included topics related to children having sex, rape and slavery.
The Daily Mail reported that of more than 1,000 searches, 402 contained troubling terms like ‘kids having sex’, ‘slavery’, ‘people getting raped’, ‘abduction’ and ‘dragged into a van and raped’.
“When that is put alongside everything that actually happened and your actions since, it convinces me that the material influenced your thinking and your decision making and your intention,” Justice Globe said.
“I bear in mind no physical harm was caused… however, the extensive psychological harm to her mother was devastating. She won’t let her daughter out of her sight and won’t let her go to nursery.”
He outright rejected the girls claim they had “no specific intent” to harm the youngster, who would have been physically or sexually exploited if she had not been rescued, he said.
“It was the true reason as to why she was taken. Her [the mother’s] fears are well founded.”
The court also heard at least one of the teenagers had been groomed by an older man whom she had been chatting to online who may have instigated the plot.
A five year sentence was recommended for the girls but the sentence was reduced to three years and three months because the girls had pleaded guilty.
Justice Globe also refused to publicly identify the girls because of their age.
“Anonymity is never an easy matter to resolve where there is an offence committed of public importance… Open justice is uppermost in my mind.”