A FORMER prison officer has to accept he is a sex pervert, a judge said after police found hard-core child porn on his computer.

Andrew Burns, 68, encrypted his illegal store to prevent others finding out about it, had online conversations about child sex and molested a woman following his arrest at his Clifton Moor home, York Crown Court heard.

His lawyer, Richard Reed, conceded his client was in denial about being a sex offender and was trying to minimise his crimes.

Burns is banned from being with any one under 16 unless the encounter is entirely supervised by an adult who knows full details about his sex crimes.

“It is no good telling them (probation officers) you have no sexual interest in children. It is perfectly obvious you do,” Judge Geoffrey Marson QC told Burns. “The sooner you acknowledge it, the better it will be for you and the better for the public.”

Burns, of Manor Lane, Clifton Moor, pleaded guilty to 11 charges of possessing child porn which he downloaded from the internet between December 2006 and December 2007. He was arrested during a police raid on his home on February 18, 2008, and in 2009, he was fined for sexually assaulting a woman.

Judge Marson gave him a three-year community order including a sex offender treatment programme and three years’ supervision.

He was also put on the sex offenders’ register for five years and given a sexual offences prevention order for life, under which he must allow police to check his computer and mobile phone contents at any time and is forbidden unsupervised contact with anyone under 16. Alan Mitcheson, prosecuting, said the Metropolitan Police alerted North Yorkshire Police to Burns’ activities.

York detectives found 29 porn images featuring children aged about four to 14 on his computer and floppy discs including seven hard-core child porn pictures.