Richmond man arrested after being confronted by so-called paedophile hunters

A Richmond man has been arrested on suspicion of causing or inciting a girl aged 13 to 15 to engage in sexual activity.

The arrest was made at 10.40pm on March 9 after the 55-year-old was confronted by a so-called paedophile hunter group.

The group, called Keeping Kids Safe, knocked on the man’s door and had a conversation with him through an open window.

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Police then arrived and arrested the man.

Following questioning in custody, the man was released on condition police bail while enquiries are ongoing.

North Yorkshire Police said all required safeguarding measures had been put in place.

A spokesman added: “North Yorkshire Police will act appropriately on any information which is brought to our attention.

“However, our position on so-called paedophile hunter groups reflects the position of the National Police Chiefs’ Council, in that we understand the desire to protect children but any member of the public who has information about child sexual abuse – online or otherwise – should get in contact with the police so we can investigate and bring people to justice.

“Such groups are taking risks that they do not understand and which can undermine police investigations.

“Most importantly, unlike our officers, they have no way of safeguarding child victims.

“In this specific investigation, it is important to stress that the case is now active under the Contempt of Court Act following the arrest.

“We therefore strongly urge people – especially those online – not to act in a way which could compromise the investigation and the course of justice.”