Page last updated at 18:51 GMT, Thursday, 1 October 2009 19:51 UK

Nursery abuser urged to tell all

 Vanessa George, Angela Allen and Colin Blanchard
The trio met on the social networking website Facebook

Detectives have pledged to try to identify the children abused by a Plymouth nursery worker.

Vanessa George pleaded guilty, along with Angela Allen and Colin Blanchard, to a string of child sex offences in a case described by police as "devilish".

The judge urged George, who met the others online, to do the "decent thing" and name children she had assaulted.

A spokeswoman for the parents of children who went to the nursery said "they were sick to the stomach".

Detective Inspector Costa Nassaris from Devon and Cornwall Police says despite repeated questioning, George had refused to disclose their identities.

The probability I would have to say is very low that we will identify any of these children
Det Insp Costa Nassaris

"We've interviewed her four or five times, and we've made it a priority of ours to ask her about the identification of the victims but at this stage she hasn't given us the name of any child," he said.

"... the judge has done everything he possibly can to make it quite clear to her that he expects her to provide the information which she must have."

He said experts had been unable to identify any of the children filmed by George because of the "nature of the images themselves".

"Work is ongoing, we've not given up on that but the probability I would have to say is very low that we will identify any of these children," he warned.

Parents' spokeswoman Kathy Hancock said George, who had worked at Little Ted's nursery in the Efford area of Plymouth for three years, was a "well-liked member of the community".

"She was very friendly with the parents, she would babysit for them in their homes, and she was in a position of trust that she completely violated," she said.

Nottinghamshire Police spokesman: "The cunning they have all used for their own ends is really, really shocking"

Children's Secretary Ed Balls said it was a "deeply distressing and disturbing case" and he expected the serious case review to be completed as soon as possible.

George, Allen and Blanchard, all 39, met via the social networking site Facebook. They had never met in person before appearing at Bristol Crown Court on Thursday. They are due to be sentenced next month.

About 30 parents wept in court as the guilty pleas were entered.

Allen cried as she pleaded guilty while Blanchard showed no reaction and George hung her head in the dock.

The abuse began in September last year and the three were arrested in June following a police investigation involving officers from the forces in Devon and Cornwall, Nottinghamshire and Greater Manchester.

'Horrific and devilish'

The assaults were recorded on mobile phones and the trio shared images via e-mail and text messages.

George admitted seven sexual assaults and six counts of distributing and making indecent pictures of children.

IT worker Blanchard, from Rochdale, pleaded guilty to 17 child pornography counts and two sexual assaults on children. Allen, from Nottingham, pleaded guilty to four child sex assaults and one count of distributing an indecent image.

Child abuse is far more commonplace than most people comprehend - [studies suggest] the involvement of women is significantly under-reported
Mark Easton, BBC home editor

Detective Superintendent Adrian Pearson, of Nottinghamshire Police, said the trio had been guilty of child abuse in its most "horrific and devilish form".

"Those three individuals have shared quite willingly and freely images, texts, fantasies of the most serious level you could imagine," he said.

Ann Reddrop, from the Crown Prosecution Service, said their crimes were beyond comprehension.

"These three individuals each acted in a way which ordinary people will find hard to understand," she said.

"They showed total disregard for the lives of their victims, their own families and those they worked with, all of whom have been left devastated by these crimes."

Judge John Royce, who adjourned sentencing for reports, warned the three abusers they faced substantial prison sentences.

Jon Kay has been to Plymouth to meet one mother who trusted Vanessa George to look after her children.

He said the "decent" thing for George to do would be to co-operate with police in identifying all the abuse victims in the photographs.

Speaking to George's lawyer, the judge said: "Your client must know it seems to me who she has abused and who she has not. If I were a parent, I would want to know whether my child was abused or not."

It is not known when the three first met but Detective Inspector Tony Creely, of Greater Manchester Police's sexual crime unit, said they "were as bad as each other".

"Blanchard, George and Allen sent thousands of messages between each of them. Blanchard expressed love for each of the women, and they would reciprocate," he said.

"They would discuss sexual matters of a crude and gross nature and the abuse of children in the texts and e-mails.

"All of them were getting gratification from the texts and seeing who could have the worst idea."

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