Spain’s Supreme Court on Friday upheld the 135-year prison sentence of a British teacher and nanny who created and distributed pornography about children in her care after changing her name and country following previous convictions.
Ben David Rose legally changed his identity following his conviction on child pornography charges in Britain, meaning he did not appear as a registered sex offender during background checks in Spain.
Rose, formerly known as Ben David Lewis, received a two-year suspended sentence in June 2016 for child pornography offenses in the English city of St. Albans. In August of the same year, with a new name and passport, he was working as a nanny in the Spanish city of Zaragoza.
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Rose then moved to Madrid and worked there as a nanny for two other young children before taking a job teaching English at a private school.
When police later searched his phone, they found dozens of photos and videos of him with 6-year-old girls inside a classroom. Rose was also convicted of photographing three children under 10 naked or in their underwear and distributing the images on the dark web of her from her time as a nanny in Zaragoza.
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The Supreme Court on Friday upheld Rose’s conviction and sentence in a lower court on child pornography offenses, dozens of disclosure-related offenses and a single “crime against moral integrity” conviction.
The verdict in his appeal comes at a time of heightened scrutiny for private schools in Spain, as police investigate how a lunch provider at a French school in Barcelona was able to initiate sexual contact with 5-year-olds.
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British campaigners, including the charity The Safeguarding Alliance, are lobbying the UK government to change the law on name changes.
“Existing laws allow offenders to bypass the system, free to obscure their identities without being monitored,” the charity said.