The ringleader of a paedophile gang which raped children as young as eight and held abuse parties at a secluded farmhouse has been jailed indefinitely at Reading Crown Court.

Simon Wyn-Davies, a 38-year-old soldier, pleaded guilty to 22 counts of raping children under the age of 13. He has been given an indeterminate sentence and will serve a minimum of 11 and a half years in prison.

Wyn-Davies's sentence follows those of his fellow gang members Nicholas Cordery, Anthony Flack and Peter Malpas, who were jailed for a combined total of 35 years last month.

During the hearings, it emerged that the gang regularly sent each other pictures and lurid details of their abuse, and tipped each other off about vulnerable children. On one occasion, Davies filmed himself raping a girl and sent the footage to Cordery, who had originally groomed the child.

Cordery, a 63-year-old farmer from Wiltshire, regularly invited his friends to parties at his barn. It is reported that bestiality and sexual abuse took place there.

During last month's trials of Wyn-Davies's fellow gang members, it was revealed that the ring had been discovered when a covert investigator posed as a child online to lure Flack, a 54-year-old IT trainer, to a hotel room. When he arrived, Flack was arrested and forced to reveal his gang's activities.

During a subsequent examination of Cordery's farm, police discovered a disk containing 1,700 indecent images of children.

Speaking after Wyn-Davies was sentenced, Detective Chief Inspector Noel McHugh said: "This has been an exceptionally challenging and complex investigation covering several police force areas. Today's result demonstrates the commitment of the Met Police Paedophile Unit to use all lawful tactics to capture the most dangerous sex offenders and protect the most vulnerable.

"I would like to pay tribute to not only the Paedophile Unit but all those partner agencies that supported this case: health, social care and education authorities, other police forces, the Crown Prosecution Service and most importantly our amazing survivors (victims).

"Everyone involved has secured compelling evidence against these highly manipulative, evil and dangerous individuals."