A PERVERT believed he was sending nude photographs of himself and sexually chatting to a '13-year-old girl’, but was actually being caught in a police sting, a court heard.

Philip Michael James Lewis, aged 44, was caught in a police operation into sexual crime in Dorset after he used the Kik messaging service to sexually communicate with who he thought was a teenager called Holly.

Prosecuting, Siobhan Oxley, explained to Weymouth Magistrates’ Court how police officers had set up a decoy and began communicating with Lewis between September 13 and October 29, 2020.

She said: “He was using a name on Kik messaging app and engaging in communication with the decoy named Holly believing it was a girl.

“The content was sexual and it also involved him sending photos of himself, face, body, one of him in the shower and one of him in a t-shirt with no bottoms on and his genitals on display.”

Some of the communications saw the decoy 'Holly' advising him in the message that she had the phone from her mum.

Lewis sent sexually suggestive questions and messages to the decoy on a number of dates as well as photographs of himself.

Lewis, who admitted during the conversations he could 'get into trouble', also said he was committing various sexual acts in a bid to flirt with the 'girl'.

Ms Oxley added: “Mr Lewis knew that it was the profile of a young girl and engaged with sexual chat with the profile and as mentioned he sent photos of himself."

'I am stupid...and I am going to lose everything’

Dorset Echo: Lewis used Kik to chat to the 'girl' who turned out to be a police officerLewis used Kik to chat to the 'girl' who turned out to be a police officer

Several weeks after Lewis stopped communicating with the decoy, police officers visited his address and seized his iPhone for forensic examination on January 20, 2021.

A remorseful Lewis said he had made a mistake and feared he was ‘going to lose everything’.

Ms Oxley continued: “He was taken to Weymouth custody and in interview, he co-operated with police.

“He did state, ‘I am an idiot...I am stupid...and I am going to lose everything’.

“He gave full and frank admissions in interview and showed remorse.”

Lewis, of Main Road in Tolpuddle, pleaded guilty to a charge of attempting to engage in sexual communications with a child under the age of 16.

Dorset Echo: Weymouth Magistrates' CourtWeymouth Magistrates' Court

Mitigating, Mark Hensleigh, told the court that Lewis was apologetic about his actions. He also noted that Lewis did not attempt to meet up with the ‘girl’ and stopped texting her months ago.

He said: “The offences only occur in a short period of time and he stops the communications and he stopped them before the police interviewed him.

“He has fully co-operated with the police on this matter.”

Lewis was given unconditional bail to appear at Bournemouth Crown Court on Monday, August 16 for sentencing.