"Jon Venables groomed me online": Single mother spent a year exchanging flirty messages with James Bulger killer without knowing his…

'Venables tried to groom me': Single mother's unknowing flirt with Bulger killer until he scared her off with graphic image
Sarah Finn spent a year chatting to Bulger killer not knowing his identity
Single mother-of-one describes him as 'charming, kind and easy to talk to'Venables tried to convince her to meet and she nearly let him see her sonMs Finn ended online relationship after he sent a picture of his penis

By
Sara Malm

PUBLISHED:

00:32 GMT, 3 March 2013

|

UPDATED:

02:32 GMT, 3 March 2013

Child murderer Jon Venables spent nearly a year trying to seduce a mother-of-one, she has revealed.

Sarah Finn, 36, unknowingly exchanged flirty online messages and texts with James Bugler’s killer before his 2010 conviction.

Venables, now 30, repeatedly tried to convince the single mother to meet up and also sent her a picture of his genitals.

Groomer: Jon Venables, pictured aged ten at the 1993 arrest, befriended single mother Sarah Finn online and spent nearly a year trying to seduce her and convince her to meet him

Groomer: Jon Venables, pictured aged ten at the 1993 arrest, befriended single mother Sarah Finn online and spent nearly a year trying to seduce her and convince her to meet him

‘He nearly became mine, and that terrified me,’ she told the Sun on Sunday. ‘It’s chilling to think our relationship could have gone further. ‘

She added that she might have considered letting him meet her then ten-year-old son – the same age as Venables when he murdered toddler James Bulger in Bootle, Merseyside in 1993.

Ms Finn ended their online relationship after Venables’ messages became increasingly sexual, culminating in him sending her a photograph of his penis.

The pair began their flirty exchanges after Venables approached Ms Finn on MySpace in March 2007, and she describes him as ‘good looking, charming, kind and easy to talk to.’

'Charming': Sarah Finn describes Venables as 'kind' and 'easy to talk to'

'Charming': Sarah Finn describes Venables as 'kind' and 'easy to talk to' (file photo)

Ms Finn, who had recently moved to North England with her son, accepted his friend request and found that they shared a love for rock music, festivals and partying.

They began chatting on MSN Messenger, after which they became friends on Facebook and swapped phone numbers.

She describes him as a ‘sound’ guy who told her how much he loved the Pirates of the Caribbean film and rock band Muse.

Ms Finn admitted that she enjoyed their messaging and that they would have intimate conversations and text each other ‘quite a lot’.

She said he would often compliment her appearance and they would talk about going on nights out together.

She says Venables kept asking to meet up with her but suggested areas she was unfamiliar with, which deterred her from following through.

The pair were in contact until Venables shared the intimate picture in 2008, but Ms Finn admits there were alarm bells before that.

She says he told her things she found hard to believe and recalls speaking to Venables using a web-camera in May 2007 when he appeared to be under the influence of drugs and alcohol, before falling asleep mid-way through their chat.

After she took a step back in 2008, Venables, operating under his new identity, deleted his Facebook profile and MySpace photographs.

Two years later he was sentenced to two years in prison for offences involving more than 100 images of child pornography, some involving children as young as two.

Her online flirt’s true identity was only revealed to Ms Finn when she was contacted by a private crime enthusiast who believed her to already know who she had been talking to.

Ms Finn now says she finds it terrifying
to think that she might have ended up dating a murderer, or what would
have happened if she had agreed to meet him.

James Bulger was murdered in 1993

 Robert Thompson

Jon Venables and his friend Robert Thompson, right, were convicted of the torture and murder of two-year-old James Bulger, left, in 1993

Child killer: The last image of James Bulger shows him holding the hand of Jon Venables as they leave a shopping centre in Bootle, Merseyside

Child killer: The last image of James Bulger shows him holding the hand of Jon Venables as they leave a shopping centre in Bootle, Merseyside

Last month was the 20th anniversary of the death of toddler James Bulger.

Jon Venables and his friend Robert Thompson were only ten when they abducted, tortured and murdered the two-year-old in 1993.

Last month an image, uploaded to Twitter, allegedly showed Jon Venables at a birthday party after his 2001 release with a new identity.

Both Venables and Thompson are protected by an injunction granting them lifelong anonymity for fear of revenge attacks.

The picture purporting to be of Venables was re-tweeted by more than 100 users and although it was swiftly taken down, it may have been viewed by thousands.

Venables has served his child pornography
sentence and a parole hearing is scheduled to take place within the
next couple of months.