LONDON (AP) — A former British counter-terrorism officer pleaded guilty Monday to 19 voyeurism offenses that involved him posing as a pilot to secretly film naked models using spy cameras after arranging fake photo shoots.
Metropolitan Police Detective Inspector Neil Corbel admitted the offenses, which were said to not be linked to his work as an officer, at Westminster Magistrates’ Court in central London. He will appear at the court on Oct. 4 for sentencing.
The 40-year-old used devices hidden in items including tissue boxes, phone chargers, an air freshener, and glasses to video his unsuspecting victims. He booked models on internet sites giving false details and claiming to be a pilot, then planted the cameras in hotel rooms, apartments and Airbnbs.
Corbel was caught after a woman, who had agreed to pose for a naked photo shoot, became suspicious of a digital clock and found it was a spy camera.
Police found images of 51 women on Corbel’s hard drive and were able to identify 19 victims willing to make statements against him. The offences took place across the London, Manchester and Brighton areas from January 2017 to February 2020.
Prosecutor Babatunde Alabi said only one victim agreed to be videoed and that they included escorts, who had agreed to have sex with Corbel but not to be filmed. He also said two models had some relationship with the officer.
“He admitted he was doing it, or recording them, for his own sexual gratification and admitted most of the models didn’t know about the videoing,” he said.
The Met said Corbel will also face misconduct proceedings.
“It is vital that the public feel that they can trust the police and, if an officer undermines that trust, it is important that their crimes are investigated thoroughly and robustly,” said Detective Chief Superintendent Marcus Barnett.