A man from Edgware was jailed for more than 13 years and 8 months on Wednesday 9 August, after pleading guilty to sexual offences relating to two children in Hertfordshire.
Michael Hargrave, 31, from Loch Crescent in Edgware, was arrested by officers from Hertfordshire Constabulary after a 14-year-old girl from Hemel Hempstead reported engaging in sexual activity with a man she had met online.
Although Hargrave had used an online alias, further investigations revealed his true identity and he was arrested at an address in Kings Langley on 11 May 2023.
Further investigation by detectives whilst he was in custody also revealed another nine year old victim in Hemel Hempstead, whom officers were able to safeguard. Hargrave had also been chatting to her via Snapchat using his online alias.
Hargrave was charged with a disturbing array of offenses, including two counts of sexual communication with a child, three counts of sexual activity with a child, two counts of causing a child to witness a sexual act, one count of enticing a child into sexual activity, three counts of breaching a sexual harm prevention order, and one count of failing to comply with notification requirements.
The offences took place between January 2022 and April of this year. Hargrave met both victims initially on Snapchat and then arranged to meet the 14 year old victim in person, and subsequently committed offences against her.
Hargrave was remanded to prison and appeared at St Albans Crown Court on Thursday 10 August where he pleaded guilty to all the charges. His sentence was extended for another five years on licence, and he will be on the Sex Offenders Register and have to abide indefinitely by the conditions of a lengthy Sexual Harm Prevention Order.
Detective Sergeant Sam Jarvis from the COST team said: “This was a good result for the team, who have taken another very dangerous offender off the streets thanks to the bravery of the two victims. We will continue to identify and proactively target those within Hertfordshire who pose a sexual risk towards children.”
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