A NATIONAL child cruelty charity has urged that more needs to be done to fight the rise of indecent images cases after a court judge said that police now have to out-source investigations to cope with an influx.

The NSPCC was responding to comments made by Judge Peter Ross at a sentencing hearing at Oxford Crown Court on Tuesday.

The judge said that some cases were taking year's just to make it to the courts and that police now had to out-source the analysis of seized devices just to cope with the rise.

Responding to the comment the NSPCC said in a statement that more needed to be done to tackle offending.

A spokesperson said: "Last year a child abuse image offence was recorded every 23 minutes in the UK, so while police do all they can to identify offenders and support victims it’s clear that the war on this abhorrent crime cannot be left to them to fight alone.

"Children are being exploited into sending images of themselves which are ending up on sites used by predators, but social networks can do far more to tackle grooming and protect children online."

The charity said that it had also launched a new campaign - the Wild West Web campaign calling on the UK government to impose regulation on our social media use.

The NSPCC said: "Because self -regulation has drastically failed the NSPCC’s Wild West Web campaign is calling on Government to regulate social networks and force them to cut these images off at source."