A Birmingham man who had planned to rape the children of a woman he was messaging online has been jailed for 15 years.

Christopher Brand was sentenced at the city’s Crown Court on Tuesday 23 January for the offences, following trial at the same court in December.

In June last year, the 62-year-old struck up a conversation over the internet with a woman he believed had young children.

Brand, who had previous convictions for arranging to meet a child for sexual activity and for possessing indecent images of children, discussed attending a location outside of Birmingham over a weekend period, with the intention of raping both children.

But unbeknown to Brand, the woman he was chatting to was actually an officer from Tarian, the southern Wales Regional Organised Crime Unit. They had been monitoring his online activities and after he engaged in communication with their officer, they got in touch with West Midlands Police (WMP).

Christopher Brand has been jailed for 15 years WMP
Christopher Brand has been jailed for 15 years

WMP opened an investigation and arrested Brand on 22 June last year, recovering a phone that he had used to contact the officer.

Brand was charged and remanded in custody until his trial, which took place between 13 and 19 December 2023, at Birmingham Crown Court.

Brand was found guilty of two counts of attempting or facilitating the commission of a child sex offence, and for obscene publication. He was sentenced to 15 years with a further six on extended licence.

Detective Constable Simon Roberts from the WMP Major Crime Team said: “We’re grateful to our colleagues in the southern Wales Regional Organised Crime Unit for alerting us to Brand’s abhorrent activities.

“This was an excellent joint operation against a highly dangerous sexual predator. Although he was never in a position to carry out these appalling crimes, it was obvious from correspondence that he fully intended to and he has been deservedly locked up for a very long time.”

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