Student’s porn haul

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Cyber cops who checked a university student’s computer discovered around 50,000 pornographic images of children, a court has been told.

The downloaded haul was found at Christopher Murdanaigum’s flat at Still Haugh, Fountainhall.

And this week, he was placed on the Sex Offenders Register for five years.

The 25-year-old is now waiting to see if he’ll be allowed to continue studying for a masters degree in finance and management at Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh.

The first offender is due to be sentenced by Sheriff Kevin Drummond next month after background reports have been prepared by social workers.

At Jedburgh Sheriff Court, Murdanaigum admitted on indictment possessing indecent photographs, or pseudo-photographs, of children between April 29 and May 8 last year.

His plea of not guilty to taking, or allowing to be taken, indecent photographs of children, was accepted by the Crown.

Procurator fiscal Graham Fraser revealed information had been received by the cyber crime unit which led to a police search of the flat in Fountainhall and that Murdanaigum told officers he had two computers and a laptop.

Police removed the laptop and harddrive and found a number of search key words – including Lolita guy.

Mr Graham revealed: “The harddrive had a folder with 34 sub folders and approximately 50,000 images.”

The fiscal said the majority were at level one – the lowest on the pornographic scale – with 36 at level two, including 17 movies.

Mr Fraser added: “It is accepted these are towards the bottom of the end of the scale and that he has managed to exclude higher level images – whether he meant to, or as a matter of chance.”

Murdanaigum, who lives at the Lord Thomson halls of residence in Edinburgh, admitted to police that he used the website to download pornography. He told them he used peer-to-peer or file sharing software which meant he could download other people’s data.

The fiscal added: “He had some misguided believe that the LS [Lolita] series of images was legal, but now accepts that it was not.”

His advocate said the student was waiting to see if he could continue at university.

He told the court: “What is significant is that the quantity is confined to level one images and was solely for personal use.

“The vast majority were still images and there is absolutely no suggestion of him seeking out others online or being involved in social engagement with others.

“Level one is consistent with pornographic interest.”

Murdanaigum will be sentenced on March 23.