A "DANGEROUS" predator has been jailed for five years after a long-running investigation by Essex Police's Management of Sexual Offenders and Violent Offenders team.

Joe McCallum, 32, was due to come off the Sex Offenders Register in January last year, however, his monitoring team realised to posed an ongoing risk to children.

An application for a further Sexual Harm Prevention Order (SHPO) was made and granted at court, restricting his contact with girls under 18, his access to internet-enabled devices and his use of social media.

However, just two-months later in March, a vulnerable teenage girl was seen getting in to his care.

This was reported to the police and McCallum was stopped and arrested.

A search of his car revealed a phone he had concealed from his monitoring officers.

When questioned by officers he admitted breaching the terms of his SHPO by communicating with a girl under the age of 18, having a smart phone which he had not notified police of, and using social media and dating apps.

He was later charged for four counts of breaching an interim sexual harm prevention order and remanded in custody.

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The data from McCallum's mobile phones were analysed and showed he had been engaging in sexual communication with other teenage girls and breaching his SHPO using various aliases.

McCallum, of Destination Drive, Colchester, who has remained in prison, admitted all the charges and was was sentenced to five years in prison at Chelmsford Crown Court on Thursday.

The investigation was carried out by our Management of Sexual Offenders and Violent Offenders team (MOSOVO), a team dedicated, specialist officers who work to manage the risk serious sexual and violent offenders pose to the community.

This includes working with partner agencies to monitor and risk assess offenders prior to, and after, their release from prison to reduce the risk they pose to the public.

They carry out proactive checks to ensure the people they are managing are adhering to the terms of their release and use specialist equipment to identify any offences, including polygraphs.

Detective Inspector Nathan Hutchinson, who manages the MOSOVO team in north Essex, said: “Joe McCallum is a dangerous individual who poses a very real risk to children.

“He will now spend the foreseeable future behind bars where he cannot pose a threat.

“My team will continue to monitor and carry out regular, proactive checks on dangerous offenders to ensure they are abiding by the terms of their release and the court orders they are subject to.”