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Friday, 13 September, 2002, 21:40 GMT 22:40 UK
Soham policemen on child porn charges
Detective Constable Brian Stevens
Brian Stevens at the memorial service last month
The policeman who comforted the parents of murdered schoolgirl Jessica Chapman has been charged with offences relating to the possession of indecent images of children.

Detective Constable Brian Stevens, 41, who last month read aloud a poem at a memorial service for the girls, was charged on Friday night, Cambridgeshire Police said.

Pc Antony Goodridge, 34, who also worked on the Soham murder inquiry, was also charged with offences relating to the possession of indecent images of children.

Both officers have been suspended from duty and will appear before magistrates at Bury St Edmunds on Saturday morning.

Police have seized two computers - believed to come from each man's home - for analysis.

'No connection'

The charges came after detectives were given an extra 12 hours to question the two officers following their arrests at their homes at 0700 BST on Thursday.

DC Stevens last month read aloud a poem written by a friend of the family of Jessica Chapman at a memorial service at Ely Cathedral, after she was found dead along with friend Holly Wells.

However, police have stressed these charges are completely unrelated to the murder case.

The parents of both girls have been told of the latest developments, and released a statement in which they said they still had full confidence in the murder inquiry.

Worldwide operation

The officers were arrested by detectives from the West Midlands Police participating in Operation Ore, the UK branch of a global FBI-led operation codenamed Operation Candyman.

Both are accused of "inciting others to distribute indecent photographs of children".

Operation Candyman has so far identified thousands of internet paedophile suspects around the world.

 WATCH/LISTEN
 ON THIS STORY
The BBC's Duncan Kennedy
"Police say his arrest has nothing to do with the investigation into the girl's deaths"

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04 Sep 02 | Politics
30 Aug 02 | England
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