One of Britain’s most respected pilots and a former Red Arrows ace has avoided prison despite a hoard of despicable child abuse photographs and film. Andrew Lloyd MBE, 59, formerly known as Andrew Cubin, had an ‘outstanding military record’ during a 20-year career in the Royal Air Force and flew fighter jets on 88 missions of fight.
But the court was sacked as a British Airways pilot after previously admitting three counts of possessing indecent images of children – 48 of them in the most serious category. During his sentencing hearing before Swindon Crown Court Solicitor Robert Welling said police attended his previous address, in Kings Meadow, Crudwell, near Malmesbury, Wilts., in February of last year, following a denunciation of two indecent images uploaded on the Internet.
Officers seized a laptop and hard drive from his home and forensic analysis revealed 48 still and moving images of Category A child sexual abuse had been found. A total of 39 category B still and moving images were also discovered, while ten category C images were also found.
Lloyd told officers in a custody interview that he was looking for footage of his 14-year-old daughter, who died in his arms in 2016. He claimed she had uploaded pictures of herself in underwear on demand for a man online. before his death.
But Mr Welling said his claims did not explain why he also collected indecent footage of underage boys and why the footage was kept in separate labeled folders on a hard drive. The court heard that during his career, when he was known as Andy “Cubes” Cubin, he flew in the Red Arrows and piloted fighter jets on 88 combat missions.
In defence, Nicholas Wragg said his client’s 14-year-old daughter Hannah had died despite frantic attempts to save her life following an unexpected cardiac arrest in 2016. He said Wiltshire Air Ambulance had was called about the incident, but their doctors were unable to save her. his.
After Hannah’s death, Lloyd and his wife, who supported him in court from the public gallery, discovered a number of photographs – depicting their daughter in her underwear – on her mobile phone. Mr Wragg said a man on Instagram requested the images.
The police received the phone and no investigation took place. Mr Wragg said the defendant took it upon himself to go online to find the person who had requested the footage – but now accepts it was a ‘hopeless prospect’. As part of his own search for the man on the Internet, he had amused himself by exchanging images of other children in order to locate the person who had received images of his daughter.
He said Lloyd flew fighter jets on 88 combat missions while serving in the Royal Air Force and was an expert witness in the investigation of air crashes. “He saw some particularly horrific things, bodies of children and people who met an unhappy end,” Mr Wragg said.
He added that Lloyd saw “many of his friends and colleagues die”. Mr Wragg told the court that the media coverage around his conviction had a “profound” effect on him and that he lost his job as a pilot with British Airways. He said Lloyd “lost so much in his life” and the “intense media coverage” of the case resulted in the key to his wife’s car.
He said Lloyd, now from Wood Close, Windsor, Berkshire, set out to work with StopSo, which provides specialist therapy for sex offenders. In a report, Councilor Amanda Burbage said he suffered from complex PTSD following his military service and the death of his daughter.
Mr Wragg said ‘it just wouldn’t have happened’ if he hadn’t discovered the half-naked pictures on Hannah’s phone. He described his client as ‘intelligent, capable and extremely remorseful’ and asked His Honor Judge Keith Cutler CBE to consider a community sentence rather than detention. He said Lloyd had undertaken “tremendous work” since his arrest, including psychosexual counseling.
Judge Cutler CBE said his crimes were a “very serious matter” and “rightly regarded as appalling and heinous in society”. Describing his offense as “unique”, he imposed a 36-month community order in which Lloyd must complete a sex-offending program and 20 days of rehabilitation activity.
He said he accepts what the defense claims as an explanation for how a man with an “impeccable” military background ended up in court. Judge Cutler said he accepted the accused’s “true remorse” and that his likelihood of reoffending was very low.
Sympathizing with Lloyd’s losses, he added: “One thing you haven’t lost is your wife’s loyal support. It gives me hope for the future. Together you can continue to work with the probation services, with counselors, you can guarantee, I hope this won’t happen again.”
He also imposed a five-year sexual abuse prevention order. The bans will be set at a later date, but will certainly include the requirement that Lloyd not delete his internet search history. He said the order will “reassure the public”.