TWENTY women counsellors were harassed online by a 29-year-old “loner” for his sexual gratification, a court was told.

Adam Smith, of Church Walks, Llandudno, got their names from a professional registry and called them between December 2019 and November last year.

He pleaded guilty at Llandudno court to harassment and was given an 18-week jail sentence suspended for two years.

Smith must take part in separate 45-day rehabilitation and special programmes to break the pattern of behaviour, do 180 hours unpaid work and a four-year criminal behaviour order bars him from further contacts in England and Wales. Costs of £193 were imposed.

Sara Worland, prosecuting, said the victims were registered emotional counsellors. Smith looked up their details and videos showed him bare to the waist and giving the impression he could be naked.

All twenty described his conversations as having sexual connotations, and there was heavy breathing. In a typical case one woman described in an impact statement how he called on WhatsApp and did not give a name. “As soon as he started talking I felt uncomfortable,” she explained.

“When he called he was lying in bed, half naked.”  She felt angry, particularly as she had recently lost her husband.

Graham Parry, defending, said Smith, “a bit of a loner” would benefit from the help suggested by the probation service. He suffered from anxiety and his mental health was “not good.” Smith was genuinely remorseful.

District Judge Gwyn Jones said it was clear from the tone of the conversation that the calls were for his sexual gratification. As police had rolled all 20 cases into one charge his sentencing powers were extremely limited. Many would feel that custody was the only answer but he had to balance this with the more important long term benefit of protecting the public.