Convicted paedophile Edward Hulfer was threatening to launch a legal action against the Metropolitan police this week after his computer was returned to him with his desktop tidied up and the icons arranged neatly in columns on the left hand side of the screen.
‘It’s an outrageous infringement of my personal liberties’, said the convicted sex offender, who has been regularly questioned by police since his original conviction in the 1980s. ‘It wasn’t just the icons, they had reset the clock, changed the colour scheme and resized the screen. I feels like it doesn’t belong to me anymore.’
Hulfer’s computer was seized by police in a random sweep of convicted sex offenders as part of a pre-emptive strike of regular suspects. Although no obscene pictures were discovered on his laptop, police said that would not prevent them from regularly checking that he had not downloaded illegal images in the future. ‘Frankly, we got fed up with what a mess his desktop was… Programmes he never used scattered over the screen, duplicate icons, spam messages that should have been binned when he first opened them – it was completely cluttered up.’
Mr Hulfer has appealed to The Sun to launch a campaign on behalf of sex offenders who have had the computers changed in this way, but was disappointed when his ‘Save Our Paedo’s Laptops’ campaign was not taken up by Britain’s biggest selling tabloid. However the victimization has left him feeling that society might start to see him as a victim rather than a threat. ‘Ok so what I did was wrong. But what the police have done to my computer is wrong too. I feel it sort of even things out.’