A FORMER Hampshire judge today pleaded guilty to a string of child pornography offences.

Father-of-four David Selwood entered guilty pleas to 12 counts of making indecent photographs of children when he appeared at London's Bow Street Magistrates' Court this morning.

All pictures were made in March and April this year.

The 69-year-old also admitted one charge of possessing indecent photographs of children in April.

Today's hearing was told how the case had had a "devastating and humiliating" effect on the former judge and his family.

Proceedings were adjourned while pre-sentence reports are prepared.

Selwood is due to be sentenced at the same court on July 13.

He had been a circuit judge in Hampshire since 1992, sitting predominantly at Portsmouth Crown Court but also presiding over cases in Southampton and Winchester.

A former Army general, he retired as a judge on June 2 - just days before he was charged with the offences after answering bail at Eastleigh police station.

Married Selwood, of Magdalen Hill, Winchester, had been arrested after police swooped on his home on April 21 as part of a national crackdown on child pornography.

He was among 7,000 people under investigation after the credit card details were linked to an American child porn Internet site.

DISGRACED David Selwood was a respected pillar of the community with a reputation as a no-nonsense judge.

With an Army background the 69-year-old was known for his tough talking in the courthouse.

His fledgling career in the legal system began as a scholar at the Law Society School of Law. Before that he had studied and become the prestigious head of Hazeldon House at Kelly College in Devon.

He then went on to become a solicitor in 1957. Between 1990 and 1992 Selwood, the son of a naval commander, was director of army legal services.

Selwood, who boasts an illustrious service record and even warrants a mention in Who's Who, became a circuit judge at Portsmouth Crown Court in 1992 and remained in the post for 12 years until his retirement this month.

During that time he became the judge allocated to deal with cases involving child pornography. He is also an author of a well-respected court manual that gives judges advice on any crown court issue.

His arrest over allegations of downloading child pornography stunned colleagues in Hampshire's legal community.

Selwood, who lives in a four-storey house at Magdalen Hill Winchester, has not set foot inside a courtroom since the news first broke of his arrest in April.

Police raided his luxury home in one of Winchester's most exclusive residential areas that he shares with his wife Barbara with whom he has three sons and a daughter.

After being questioned by Hampshire officers Selwood was bailed to Eastleigh police station while further investigations were made.

He was formally charged on June 7 when answering police bail at Eastleigh with 12 counts of making indecent images and a further charge of possessing an indecent image.

Selwood was one of 7,000 people who were under investigation for accessing an American Internet porn site who police have tracked down by using their credit card details.

While he was on bail the Lord Chancellor's office confirmed that Selwood had retired, citing grounds of ill health.

He had up until then been suspended from presiding over any cases while the investigation was on going.

By retiring exactly 12-years after he first became a circuit judge, Selwood picked up a pension package reportedly worth up to £500,000.

Judges who retire after that length of time are eligible to pick up their full £36,000 a year pension which, added to a lump sum, will make a total of almost half a million pounds by the time he reaches his 80th birthday.

However, the former judge has risked jeopardising his pay-off by admitting 13 offences relating to downloading indecent images of children.