The former PCSO secretly filmed children in swimming pool locker rooms

Ex-PCSO James Land

James Land, 43, used a police work laptop to view the horrifying footage (Image: Google/ SWNS)

A PCSO who secretly filmed young children naked in a swimming pool changing room has been arrested.

James Land, who was previously part of a team of experts fighting online crime for Derbyshire Police, spent 19 years downloading around 1,500 heinous images and videos of young people.

Derby Crown Court heard 369 of them were in the most severe Category A, with some showing children as young as two years old had been abused.

When Land’s own colleagues searched his home in Cromford in the Peak District, they also discovered a teenager’s underpants under his bed and footage of a swimming pool in Chesterfield.

The 43-year-old officer was arrested at police headquarters in May 2021 after police discovered he had been using a work laptop to access the footage.

Judge Nirmal Shant QC said: “They were clearly targeting very young children aged three to five, it was a swimming pool. This caused great sorrow to their families.

Ex-PCSO James Land

He was immediately suspended from duty after his arrest last year (Image: Derbyshire Police/ SWNS)

“You were always employed by Derbyshire Constabulary as a PCSO – in 2017 you were given a role in cybercrime.

“You have provided safety notices regarding online safety and in light of this, you accept that you were in possession of inappropriate images from 2002 to 2021.”

Land resigned from the force in April after being suspended early in the investigation.

He pleaded guilty to three counts of taking indecent images, one of possession of extreme images, six of voyeurism and one of possession of prohibited images of children.

Judge Shant sentenced the ex-PCSO, now of Abergele, Conwy, Wales, to 27 months in prison.

Derby Combined Court Center

Land was sentenced to 27 months in prison (Image: Google)

Land also became the subject of a 10-year sexual harm prevention order.

Following his conviction, Derbyshire Police condemned his actions.

Deputy Chief Constable Kate Meynell said after the case: “There is no place in Derbyshire Police for someone committing crimes as serious as this.

“We, like the communities we serve, are shocked and disgusted by Land’s actions.

“He was arrested and suspended at the earliest opportunity and the gross misconduct trial will continue after the criminal case has been concluded.

“We will try to put him on the ban list, which will prevent him from working for other police forces and in other specific professions.”

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Justin Scacco

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