'Depraved' Edinburgh animal rights extremist caught with hoard of child rape and murder films

A perverted animal rights activist caught with a horrific collection of movies depicting children being raped and murdered has escaped a jail sentence.
Watch more of our videos on Shots! 
and live on Freeview channel 276
Visit Shots! now

Let us know what you think and join the conversation at the bottom of this article

Neil Hansen, 54, downloaded a “depraved” collection of films of young children being sexually abused after meeting fellow sickos in an online chat room.

Hansen was caught with films with titles including “15-year-old girl raped then murdered” and “Abducted, raped and left for dead”.

Depraved Hansen arrives at Edinburgh Sheriff CourtDepraved Hansen arrives at Edinburgh Sheriff Court
Depraved Hansen arrives at Edinburgh Sheriff Court

Edinburgh Sheriff Court was told police raided Hansen’s flat at the Moredun area of the capital after receiving intelligence “extreme material online” was being copied at the address.

Prosecutor Lynsay Magro said during the search officers seized three laptops, seven mobile phones and three USB devices from the home in October 2019.

The devices were examined and “a number of indecent images of children” were recovered which were described as showing “rape, torture and sadism”.

Ms Magro said: “Websites found to be searched by the accused include search terms for ‘raped Indian’ and ‘raped schoolgirl’ and ‘underage’.

Glib fiend Hansen walks free from court after dodging a prison sentenceGlib fiend Hansen walks free from court after dodging a prison sentence
Glib fiend Hansen walks free from court after dodging a prison sentence

“A number of videos were found to have been copied onto a device including ‘seven-year-old girl raped’, ‘Abducted, raped and left for dead” and ‘15-year-old girl raped then murdered’.”

The total amount of images and movies discovered included 75 Category A - the most depraved end of the spectrum - 40 Category B and 127 Category C.

The court was also told Hansen is currently a university student and his previous offending in England is “highly related to animal rights campaigning that he was following at that time”

In February 1995 Hansen was jailed for three years for alleged property damage and conspiracy to send a hoax bomb to Glaxo Wellcome public relations officer Karen Gardner.

Hansen had previously pleaded guilty to possessing the images at the capital court last month.

Sentencing him, Sheriff Kenneth Campbell QC said: “It is clear from what I have read [in the reports] that your interests can only be described as depraved.

“It is clear you became desensitised by the images which you were viewing.

“In dealing with your case I am primarily concerned with protecting the public and I have considered whether custody is the best way to do that.

“I think that in your case intensive work in the community is a disposal which is going to protect the public best in the future.”

Hansen was placed on an offenders supervision order for three years and told he must complete an assessment to take part in the specialist sex offender programme CISSO.

Hansen was also placed on the Sex Offenders’ Register for three years.

Lawyer Ruairidh Mulheron, defending, said his client “now recognises this is not a victimless crime” and he has “a great deal of regret, shame and embarrassment” about his offending.

Mr Mulheron added: “He had a long term interest in perhaps more deviant pornography, albeit legal pornography, which led him to chat rooms where individuals would share these images.

“They would share images to shock each other and eventually images of children were shared.”

Hansen pleaded guilty to a charge of taking, permitting to be taken or making indecent photographs of children at his home address between December 29, 2018 and October 17, 2019.

A message from the Editor:

Thank you for reading this article. We're more reliant on your support than ever as the shift in consumer habits brought about by coronavirus impacts our advertisers.

If you haven't already, please consider supporting our trusted, fact-checked journalism by taking out a digital subscription.