Overview: 

A pervert who thought he was meeting a 15-year-old girl was snared by so-called paedophile hunters after residents of a housing estate helped chase him down.

Mark Turnbull, 51, had been engaging in explicit chat with who he thought was a schoolgirl on the social media app Scout but was actually talking to vigilante group who call themselves Dark Justice.

Members of the group confronted him when he turned up meet the ‘girl’ at St Anthony’s Park in Walker, Newcastle. He sped away in his car to the nearby Daisy Hill housing estate where he left his vehicle but with the help of locals he was captured.

Charges:

At Newcastle Crown Court this week Turnbull, Newcastle, pleaded guilty to attempting to meet a girl under 16 following grooming.

He was sentenced to 18 months imprisonment, suspended for 24 months, made the subject of a rehabilitation activity requirement for two years and slapped with a £140 victim surcharge.

He was also ordered to sign the sex offenders register for ten tears and attend a sexual offenders programme for a minimum of 54 days.