A 40-year-old man jailed for breaching a sexual offences prevention order banning him taking pictures of young girls has appeared in court to get his cameras back.

Martin Rodriguez was sentenced to eight months custody in April after police found photographs of girls at his Queens Road, Watford home, following a Crimewatch appeal.

At the time Rodriguez was the subject of an order prohibiting him taking pictures of anyone under the age of 18, after he pestered girls in Cassiobury Park and photographed them.

That public nuisance conviction in January 2007 meant he had breached a previous order imposed in 2005 for sexually assaulting a 12-year-old girl in the town. On that occasion he approached two girls at a bus stop and asked if he could take a picture of himself on top of one of them.

He also touched her and asked the girls to walk over cameras he placed on the ground so that he could take pictures.

Rodriguez has a conviction for indecent assault in Liverpool in 2000, when he was given a two-year probation order.

In 1993 he was jailed for nine months for GBH and has a drink drive conviction.

He is banned from working with children and must sign the sex offenders' register.

Rodriguez, who changed his name from that of his adoptive mother, Spiers, was given a further five-year sexual offences prevention order at St Albans Crown Court by Judge Michael Baker in April.

Judge Baker also ordered a forfeiture and destruction order of the photographic equipment used by Spiers in breaching the original order by taking more pictures of young girls.

At the same court today Spiers was successful in an application to have two cameras and a rucksack seized by police returned, as they had not been used in the offences.

Pavan Sharma, representing Rodriguez, said his client was a “photographer by profession” and that it was the hard drives and discs that should be confiscated as they stored the images.

Judge Baker said it was right equipment used in the commission of an offence should be forfeited and destroyed, but the other property could be returned.

Mr Sharma also said according to his client the original sexual offences prevention order, banning him taking pictures of anyone under the age of 18, should have included, unless with the consent of an “appropriate adult”.

Mr Sharma said: “It seems that when the 2007 order was made it was recorded incorrectly.”

Judge Baker said: “It's taken a long time to bring that to this court. If that is so you will have to make an application.

“That cannot be done today. We will need to check the court record. It is not satisfactory for matters of this sort to be raised on the back of a hearing like this.

“The order now prohibits him taking pictures of anyone under the age of 18 full stop.”

Rodgriguez had been released shortly after sentencing in April, having served the equivalent of half the eight-month sentence while remanded in custody.