June 19th 2014
A Northamptonshire man was today jailed for 18 months for having sex with a girl he knew to be 13 after grooming her on a social networking site.
19 year-old Georgi Ivanov had previously pleaded guilty at Croydon Crown Court to two counts of sexual activity with a child.
Detective Constable Sue McKenzie, from the Metropolitan Police's Sexual Offences, Exploitation and Child Abuse Command, said: "The victim is a vulnerable child who was sexually abused by Ivanov, an older man. She has suffered considerable harm as a result of what happened to her and it will take time to recover fully. I commend her courage for seeing this investigation through to the end and I hope this outcome will encourage other children who are being groomed and exploited to tell someone what is happening so we can protect them and other children."
The girl met Ivanov in 2013 whilst out with a friend. They became friends on Facebook and Ivanov's conversation with her quickly became sexual despite it being clear from her Facebook profile that she was just 13. He invited her to his flat and had sex with her.
Afterwards, via their Facebook conversations, he expressed concern that he could be in trouble for having sex with a minor. However, this did not deter him from having several more sexual encounters with her. In December 2013 the girl was reported missing and was found by officers at his then flat in South London, along with evidence that they had just had sex. Ivanov had intially denied that she was there. He initially denied knowing the victim was underage, only pleading guilty when faced with the damning evidence gathered from the social networking site.
The Met Police's Detective Inspector Jim Pryde added: "It is not acceptable for older men to prey on children for their own sexual gratification. The defendant knew the victim's age yet continued to abuse her believing he would get away with it. I believe there may be other children who have been abused by Georgi Ivanov. I urge them to come forward and, for that matter, any victim of sexual abuse. We have specially trained officers who work closely with our partner agencies and will provide support."
Anyone with information about Ivanov can call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.