AN IT consultant from Newcastle Emlyn has been convicted of stalking an 18-year-old youth causing him harassment.

Christopher Jay Hardy, aged 35, landed himself in more trouble when it was discovered that he had been recording on his mobile telephone virtually his entire trial at Swansea crown court.

Hardy, of Penlon, Pentrecagal, had denied the charge.

The jury had heard how Hardy had met the youth when he worked at a garage.

The youth told the jury how he quit his job to escape Hardy's unwanted attentions.

But Hardy tracked him down to his home, left unwanted gifts and letters on his car and repeatedly visited his home despite being told to stay away by his parents.

Hardy continued to try to contact the youth even after police had arrested him and at one stage attended his home pretending to be canvassing for the Labour Party.

The youth said he was not gay and had been "freaked out" by Hardy's pursuit of him.

Hardy admitted he had become infatuated with the youth and said he believed he was under pressure from his family to pretend he was straight.

After the jury returned a unanimous verdict of guilty Judge Paul Thomas told Hardy, who represented himself, he was "deluded" and briefly sent him into custody because he refused to shut up and listen.

He was made to delete the audio files in front of a police officer.

Hardy will be sentenced after reports have been prepared by a psychiatrist and a probation officer and was granted bail until then.

Judge Thomas described him as an "obsessive individual" and warned him that all sentencing options would be open to the court.

He issued a restraining order preventing Hardy from contact in the youth or his parents by any means.