Former Radio One DJ who arranged to have sex with vulnerable children has jail sentence increased

Mark Page even tried to bargain down a sexual encounter with a girl, 12, and a boy, 13

Published

An ex-Radio One DJ who arranged to have sex with vulnerable children in the Philippines has had a jail term increased from 12 years to 18 years by Court of Appeal judges.

Mark Page was given a 12-year sentence by a judge at Teesside Crown Court in March after being convicted of arranging the commission of a child sex offence between 2016 and 2019.

Three appeal judges on Friday concluded the 12-year sentence was unduly lenient, at a Court of Appeal hearing in London, after an application by Solicitor General Alex Chalk.

Page, who worked at the station in the 1980s, even tried to bargain down the price for a sexual encounter with a girl aged 12 and a boy of 13, saying 3,000 pesos – around £44 at today’s exchange rate – was too much.

Mark Page
Mark Page

The disgraced DJ, well known on Teesside as the match announcer at Middlesbrough FC games for 20 years until his arrest, had a lengthy career in broadcasting and set up a successful radio station for the British Army.

He used frequent business trips to the Philippines, as well as charity work, as a cover for his perverted interest in underage sex.

The 63-year-old divorced father-of-three was convicted of four out of five counts of arranging the commission of a child sex offence following a trial at Teesside Crown Court.

Undated handout photo issued by Cleveland Police of ex-Radio One DJ Mark Page who arranged to have sex with vulnerable children in the Philippines
Undated handout photo issued by Cleveland Police of ex-Radio One DJ Mark Page who arranged to have sex with vulnerable children in the Philippines

The jury cleared him of one of the charges.

Two of these offences were committed remotely from the UK in 2016, while two happened in the Philippines on separate trips made by Page in 2016 and 2019.

Facebook alerted a charity following concerns raised about messaging on its platform. The charity informed UK law enforcement and Cleveland Police carried out a search warrant at his home in January 2020.

Handout photo issued by Cleveland Police of ex-Radio One DJ Mark Page using a webcam
Handout photo issued by Cleveland Police of ex-Radio One DJ Mark Page using a webcam

Analysts studied a tablet, mobile phone and computer tower and checked his Skype activity, texts, bank account and money transfers before charging him.

Page told the court that his devices had been hacked but did not mention this while he was being interviewed by police, as he gave “no comment” answers, later explaining to the jury he was in shock.

Jo Kidd, prosecuting, drew parallels with higher profile paedophiles than Page during her damning closing speech to the jury.

Page, of Ingleby Barwick, Teesside, had no previous dealings with police and was of previously good character, but Miss Kidd said: “Some of you may be old enough to remember Jim’ll Fix It.

The Filipino Cupid Dating profile of ex-Radio One DJ Mark Page, using the alias Pancho, who arranged to have sex with vulnerable children in the Philippines
The Filipino Cupid Dating profile of ex-Radio One DJ Mark Page, using the alias Pancho, who arranged to have sex with vulnerable children in the Philippines

“You will remember watching It’s a Knockout.

“You will remember revelling in the size of Gary Glitter’s shoes.

“They were people who were spoken highly of, even people who were knighted by the Queen.”

She said there was almost a “state funeral” for Savile, with his golden coffin taken through the streets of Leeds.

Miss Kidd continued: “I am not saying this on the basis that just because Mr Page was a Radio One DJ, that it makes him guilty of these offences.

“But it is worth noting, when one puts on a public face, when one carries out charity work, it does not mean the underbelly of their sexual depravity is not real.”