Hastings ‘pimp’ fails in bid to slash prison sentence

Court news.
Court news.

A married man who posed online as a high-class pimp, looking to recruit underage girls to work as escorts, has been told by top judges that his jail term was not a day too long.

Luke Adam Heasmer, 36, was going through a “bad patch” in his marriage when he set up the “fantasy Facebook page” under a false identity.

He “set about meeting women to see how easily he could lure them into the sex trade”, the Criminal Appeal Court heard.

Heasmer, of Hardwicke Road, Hastings, was undeterred when two of his correspondents revealed they were under 16.

He continued his attempts to persuade them to become escorts, saying they could earn up to £3,000 for half an hour’s work.

He also had explicit sexual online conversations with one particularly vulnerable girl - aged just 13.

Heasmer was jailed for two and a half years at Lewes Crown Court on March 31.

He pleaded guilty to two counts of inciting child prostitution and one of inciting a child to engage in sexual activity.

Sir John Thomas, the Lord Chief Justice, Mr Justice Nicol and Mr Justice Stuart Smith, today heard him ask for that sentence to be reduced.

The court heard Heasmer told the 13-year-old that she could have “a night in a five star hotel and £3,000 for half an hour with a really nice guy.”

He told another underage girl that he ran a “very high class escort agency, not like all the rest”.

She was informed that she would earn £1,500-an-hour and would not have to have sex with “old men.”

Lawyers for Heasmer today argued that he had been treated too harshly.

It was accepted that he had not made any moves to convert the “fantasy” he was playing out online into reality.

Dismissing his appeal, however, Mr Justice Stuart Smith said: “These types of offence have the potential to cause untold harm to young people.

“Whatever problems you had in your intimate life, they should never have become the problems of young people.

“They have enough problems of their own, just trying to grow up in a difficult world.”

The judge concluded: “The overall sentence cannot be said to be manifestly excessive or wrong in principle.”

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