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A man has been jailed after arranging to meet someone he believed was a young girl to have sex.
Bhusan Chettri posed as a 16-year-old boy on social media to speak to what he believed was a 12-year-old girl.
Over the course of a month, he sent her sexual images and arranged to meet her on 2 December last year to engage in sexual activity.
The Essex Police Online Investigation Team received information about the conversations and carried out an investigation alongside colleagues from the Eastern Region Special Operations Unit (ERSOU).
Chettri was arrested in Thurrock on December 2.
He appeared at Basildon Crown Court on January 8 and admitted arranging or facilitating the commission of a sexual offence against a child, and distributing indecent photographs of a child.
The 36-year-old, formerly of Merchant Street in Mile End, London, was jailed for three years and three months on Tuesday April 20.
He was placed on the Sex Offenders Register and made subject of a Sexual Harm Prevention Order, both for an indefinite period of time.
Investigating officer PC Adam Colbear said: “Chettri used the anonymity of the internet to pretend to be a teenage boy and target someone he believed was a young girl.
“The sexually explicit content of his messages and the fact he’d arranged to meet with her to have sex was deeply disturbing and abhorrent.
“Fortunately no child came to any harm and he was arrested before he could communicate with other children.
“We are committed to keeping children safe from sexual predators and will continue to target criminals who exploit children and young people for their own gratification.
“This case also highlights how not everyone you meet online who is they claim to be.
“I would encourage children and parents to look at the www.thinkuknow.co.uk website to help keep themselves safe online, and to contact us if they are concerned someone they are speaking to online is not who they claim to be.”