A Doncaster man has been jailed for eight years for a string of sex attacks on teenage girls he met online.
Jason Armstrong, aged 51, of Moorends, preyed on victims he met by setting up fake profiles pretending to be a teenage girl looking for friends.
He admitted 21 sexual offences committed against seven victims aged between 15 and 17.
He pleaded guilty to nine counts of sexual activity with a child, two counts of meeting a child following sexual grooming, two counts of inciting a child to engage in sexual activity, three counts of distributing images and videos, four counts of making indecent images of children and one count of facilitating the commission of a child sex offence.
Armstrong, who is originally from Norfolk but recently moved to Doncaster, had victims in Cleveland, Cheshire, Berkshire, North and West Yorkshire and Scotland.
South Yorkshire Police launched an investigation after receiving a report in 2016 that he had been using a fake social media profile and through messaging apps, to pose as a 16-year-old female to ‘make friends’ and gain the trust of vulnerable teenage girls.
He then went on to introduce himself as Jay, a ‘friend’ of his fake persona.
Detective Inspector Richard Partridge said: “Armstrong is a prolific offender who intentionally and continually sought out and targeted young girls by using different online platforms and fake personas to build relationships with them.
“This was all abhorrently calculated and planned. He preyed on his victims by lying about his persona and age to gain their trust, to then groom and incite sexual activity with them for his own disturbing and sick sexual gratification.
“I am pleased he is now behind bars for his perverse actions and I can only hope this offers some form of solace to the victims, who I would I like to praise and give thanks to for their strength and bravery throughout the investigation.”
Officers seized mobile phones and electronic items from his home and car to piece together his online activity and identify victims.
DI Partridge added: “This has been a lengthy and multifaceted investigation and I want to acknowledge and thank all the officers who gathered comprehensive information and extensive evidence to build a strong case against Armstrong, as well as our partner agencies who have provided support to the victims and assisted us in putting measures in place to aid their protection and safeguarding of them.
“This case highlights the importance of being safe online and I would encourage anyone who has any concerns over the identity of a person, or would like to report any instances of inappropriate or illegal activity, to please contact police.
"We will do all we can to stop sexual offenders and bring them before the courts to be punished for their appalling crimes and achieve justice for their victims.”
Anyone with information or concerns relating to Armstrong should call South Yorkshire Police on 101 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.