NSW man charged with multiple alleged child abuse-related offences

A NSW man faced the Goulburn Local Court yesterday (Friday 17 May, 2024) charged with 12 child abuse-related offences, including allegedly possessing thousands of child abuse images and videos.

The AFP arrested the Goulburn man, 28 on Thursday (16 May 2024) after investigating a report received from the United States’ National Centre for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) about a user uploading child abuse material to social media platforms. It is alleged this user was related to 27 other reports.

AFP Eastern Command Child Protection Operations (EC-CPO) officers executed a search warrant at the man’s home on 16 May, 2024, where they located and seized two mobile phones.

Initial examination of the devices allegedly located more than 2000 files containing child abuse material, as well as a record of a sexualized online chat with an 8-year-old boy.

Police seized the mobile phones for further examination.

The man was charged with:

  • Eight counts of possessing or controlling child abuse material obtained or accessed using a carriage service, contrary to section 474.22A of the Criminal Code 1995 (Cth);
  • Two counts of producing child abuse material, contrary to section 91H(2) of the Crimes Act 1900 (NSW);
  • One count of using a carriage service for sexual activity with a person under 16 years of age, contrary to section 474.25A of the Criminal Code 1995 (Cth); and
  • One count of using a carriage service to access child abuse material, contrary to section 474.22(1)(a)(i) of the Criminal Code 1995 (Cth).

The maximum penalty for the offence of using a carriage service to access child abuse material is 20 years’ imprisonment. The maximum penalty for possessing and producing child abuse material offences is 15 and 10 years’, respectively.

The man appeared before the Goulburn Local Court and was refused bail.

AFP Acting Sergeant Nick Xuereb said children who were sexually abused were impacted every time images or videos of the crimes were accessed and shared online.

“Every child deserves to feel safe and the AFP and its partners will do whatever we can to protect children,” Acting Sergeant Xuereb said.

“Our message to online offenders has not changed – if you procure, access and transmit child abuse material, you will be found, arrested and prosecuted.”

The AFP and its partners are committed to stopping child exploitation and abuse and the ACCCE is driving a collaborative national approach to combatting child abuse.

The ACCCE brings together specialist expertise and skills in a central hub, supporting investigations into online child sexual exploitation and developing prevention strategies focused on creating a safer online environment.

Members of the public who have information about people involved in child abuse are urged to contact the ACCCE at www.accce.gov.au/report. If you know abuse is happening right now or a child is at risk, call police immediately on 000.

If you or someone you know is impacted by child sexual abuse and online exploitation, support services are available at www.accce.gov.au/support.

Research conducted by the ACCCE in 2020 revealed only about half of parents talked to their children about online safety. Advice and support for parents and carers about how they can help protect children online can be found at www.thinkuknow.org.au, an AFP-led education program designed to prevent online child sexual exploitation.

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