A former maths teacher from Croydon who groomed school girls online and sexually exploited a girl as young as 13 has been jailed.

Thomas Gander’s offences, which occurred between April 2013 and November 2015, involved five schoolgirls aged between 13 and 16.

He was sentenced to eight years and ten months for offences including incitement to engage in sexual activity, online grooming and child sexual exploitation.

Gander, of Warrington Road, Waddon, was sentenced at Guilford Crown Court on Monday, February 13.

DCI Adam Colwood, of Surrey Police Complex Abuse Unit, said: “The community should be reassured that a dangerous paedophile has been removed from our streets.

“Gander knew exactly what should be undertaken to safeguard youngsters but chose to ignore his professional expertise and deliberately set out to snare and abuse impressionable young girls.

“The online entrapment he used will immediately send out alarm bells to parents and I would encourage adults to be constantly alert and aware to what their children are doing online.

“Remember it could be one of your family that is lured in by someone similar to this insidious individual.”

At a previous hearing Gander admitted to 12 charges at the same court on December 21 last year.

He pleaded guilty to:

  • Causing a child to engage in sexual activity
  • Meeting a child following sexual grooming
  • Five counts of sexual activity with a child
  • Three counts of incite a child to engage in sexual activity
  • Inciting child exploitation
  • Possession of an indecent photograph

Gander also received a three year extended licence, a sexual harm prevention order and ordered a £120 victim surcharge.