A paralegal who was working at the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) has been banned from the profession after being jailed for online sexual offences involving children.
Christopher Anthony Walker, also known as Christopher Jones, was convicted at Wolverhampton Crown Court last July of two counts of attempting to cause a female aged 13 or over to engage in sexual activity and two counts of attempting to engage in sexual communication with a child.
According to a regulatory settlement agreement published by the SRA yesterday, the offences were committed during online conversations and did not relate to imagery or photographs.
Mr Walker was sentenced to 27 months’ imprisonment, placed on the sex offenders register for 10 years and made subject to a sexual harm prevention order for 10 years.
The SRA has made him subject to an order under section 43 of the Solicitors Act 1974, which allows it to ban non-solicitors from working in the profession without its permission.
The SRA said that, in deciding that the agreed outcome was proportionate, it took into account as mitigation that Mr Walker cooperated with the regulator “by providing full and frank admissions immediately when the SRA contacted him”.
Further, he entered an early guilty plea at court. “He acknowledged the seriousness of his offences and promptly accepted that his convictions would result in a regulatory outcome.
“He has expressed regret and remorse for his actions [and] the conviction related to his conduct outside of work.”