A police officer branded as a "sex pest" by a judge allegedly bombarded a woman with nearly 500 abuse texts and images of sexual nature during a span of 10 weeks.

Sergeant Syed Ali, 46, a married counter-terrorism officer by profession, allegedly sent nearly 500 messages to the victim during a 10-week period between May and July last year.

Ali reportedly instigated contact with her five years after an initial encounter as he began sending her lewd texts and images, reported Jersey Evening Post.

The woman initially did not recognize Ali, but later identified him as the Metropolitan counter-terrorism police officer that she had previously met as a witness some five years ago. The woman warned the officer to stop messaging her once she discovered his identity.

However, Ali, who hails from Dagenham, east London, reportedly did heed her warning. He continued to send her messages of sexual nature and allegedly sent around 450 texts between July 13 and July 23, 2020, reported Metro.

At a hearing, chief magistrate Paul Goldspring reportedly told Ali: "You only had contact with this complainant because of your role as a police officer. You abused that trust. It undermines public confidence and there is a risk that people will stop reporting crime.”

"If she (the victim) is in the position again, she may think twice about reporting a crime to the police if she thinks that in five years that officer will become a 'sex pest' - because that's what you were," Goldspring added.

"Police are meant to look after the public, not make them feel uncomfortable," the woman reportedly wrote in her victim impact statement.

The court was told that Ali's father had reportedly fallen ill at the time he began contacting the woman and that a majority of the messages he bombarded her with were sent after his father had died, BBC News reported. Ali recently resigned from the police force after 19 years of service.

He's pleaded guilty to one count of harassment without violence and was reportedly sentenced at Westminster Magistrates' Court to six weeks imprisonment and a suspended sentence of 18 months.

In addition to the suspended jail sentence, Ali was reportedly ordered to complete 200 hours of community service and has been handed a three-year restraining order to keep his distance from the woman.

In a statement, Chief Superintendent Stephen Clayman described the former sergeant's actions as "utterly shocking."

"This type of conduct has absolutely no place in the organization and we are committed to bringing the perpetrators of such crimes to justice," he added.

Ali is reportedly supported by his wife and is now looking for work.

Syed Ali
A police officer branded as a "sex pest" by a judge reportedly bombarded a woman with nearly 500 abuse texts and images of sexual nature during a span of 10 weeks. Westminster Magistrates' Court

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