Northland man jailed for sharing child sexual abuse material

A 45-year-old Kaitaia man has been sentenced to two years and six months’ imprisonment in the Whangārei District Court today for eight charges of possession, export and distribution of objectionable material depicting the sexual exploitation of children. He has been placed on the child sex offender register.

Customs initially received a referral from the US-based National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) after an overseas-based social media platform alleged a New Zealander had exported objectionable publications to their platform.

Customs identified and arrested the man after a search warrant at his home in Kaitaia in September 2023, seizing his electronic devices. Forensics specialists established he had shared child sexual abuse material on social media, which included depictions of bestiality, rape and torture. Social media chats showed the man had also engaged in depraved conversations about sexually abusing children.

Chief Customs Officer – Child Exploitation Operations Team, Simon Peterson, says possessing and sharing child sexual abuse material is not a victimless crime as it creates demand and encourages others to commit abuse, putting children in danger.

“This man was viewing violent and damaging abuse being inflicted on real children, including infants, with scant regard for the pain and trauma being caused to the victims and their families.

“Identifying, arresting and bringing to justice those who pose a sexual threat to children is a top priority for Customs. Working with our partners at Police, Department of Internal Affairs and overseas, we will fight these crimes where they occur – online, at our border, and in our communities.”

If you have concerns or suspicions about someone who may be trading in, or producing child sexual abuse images or videos, contact Customs confidentially on 0800 WE PROTECT (0800 937 768) or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

If you are, or know of, someone who is at risk or being abused, contact the Police immediately.

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