A pervert from Blackpool who preyed on young girls was snared when American police posed as one of his victims online.
A court heard Alexander Mackay, of Ventnor Road, manipulated one of his victims into making an indecent video of herself – but incriminated himself by sending it to a police officer posing as the girl.
Mackay is clearly a predatory sex offender who targeted young girls and then threatened to expose them unless they continued to commit sexual acts for his vile gratification.Lancashire Police
The 42-year-old threatened to sell the footage of the American girl to pornography sites if she did not comply with his demands.
But his campaign of abuse was brought to an end when police in Idaho, where the girl lived, began investigating.
Mackay, who also went by the name Cameron, was jailed for eight years by a judge at Preston Crown Court after he admitted a string of sex offences.
The court heard a complex investigation involving Lancashire Police revealed he used a range of aliases to target three other victims – all thought to be American girls aged between 13 and 15.
A Lancashire Police spokesman said: “Mackay is clearly a predatory sex offender who targeted young girls and then threatened to expose them unless they continued to commit sexual acts for his vile gratification.
“We would like to thank colleagues in the United States for their invaluable help in bringing Mackay to justice.
“This shows there is no hiding place for people who use the internet to target young victims in this way.”
The court heard Mackay first made contact with one of his victims, from Boise, in Idaho, when she was 12.
The pair met online and they started texting after he gave her his phone number.
He asked her to send naked pictures of herself and threatened to post her number online if she did not.
The court heard the threats continued and she went on to send him a video of her performing a sexual act.
Eventually, she worked up the courage to tell her parents, who informed the local police.
One of the American detectives eventually snared Mackay after he posed as the victim online.
Richard Archer, prosecuting, said: “The defendant said he wanted to create a website he could use to show her videos.
“Conversation culminated with him repeating threats he had made.
“He said he would post the images as media files on sites for exchanging files.
“He said the files would be available to download for free to millions of users on the internet”.
Mackay went on to be asked if he had a video of her to post on sites. As proof, the defendant sent a video of the girl as an attachment.
He was arrested by Lancashire Police in October 2012.
Detectives then discovered he had targeted three other youngsters, all thought to be in the US, by threatening them in a similar way.
He had also downloaded indecent material of children, including a three-hour video featuring two girls, possibly from Russia.
Mackay had no previous convictions and the court heard he had stopped offending by the time police tracked him down.
Rachel Woods, defending, said the threats made had been very deeply unpleasant.
None of the images were ever sent to any other forum, apart from one to the undercover officer.
She added: “Little can be said by way of explanation.
“He describes himself almost as a Jeckyll and Hyde type character.
“He has had a very solitary, lonely existence.
“The internet provides a form of escapism.”
Judge Pamela Badley told Mackay: “These are very grave offences.”
Mackay pleaded guilty to a total of 14 charges, including causing or inciting a child to engage in sexual activity.
He will be on the Sex Offender’s Register for life and subject to a sexual harm prevention order indefinitely.