Brisbane man jailed for online child abuse offences
A 66-year-old man who created, accessed and shared child abuse material has been sentenced to two years imprisonment by the Brisbane District Court today (Friday, 13 August 2021).
The Brisbane Joint Anti-Child Exploitation Team arrested the man in August 2020 after an investigation sparked by a report from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC).
The report identified the man had generated child abuse material and then uploaded that material to Google, Yahoo and Snapchat platforms.
Brisbane JACET, which comprises officers from the Australian Federal Police and Queensland Police Service, found evidence that he had transmitted and received child abuse material on social media messaging applications Wickr and WhatsApp.
Child abuse material including images and videos of pre-pubescent girls were located when police searched the man's home in Jamboree Heights.
The man pleaded guilty and today was convicted of eight offences:
- Three counts of using a carriage service to transmit child abuse material, contrary to section 474.22(1)(a)(iii) of the Criminal Code (Cth);
- Two counts of using a carriage service to access child abuse material, contrary to section 474.22(1)(a)(i) of the Criminal Code (Cth);
- Using a carriage service to cause child abuse material to be transmitted to self, contrary to section 474.22(1)(a)(ii) of the Criminal Code (Cth);
- Make child exploitation material, contrary to section 228B of the Criminal Code (Qld); and
- Possessing child abuse material obtained using a carriage service, contrary to section 474.22A of the Criminal Code (Cth).
The man must serve four months before being eligible for parole.
AFP Detective Superintendent ACCCE and Child Protection Operations Paula Hudson said the efforts of the AFP-led ACCCE and Brisbane AJCET involved in the investigation had saved children from further harm.
"It is heartbreaking to think of any child being sexually abused or exploited to satisfy an adult's criminal impulses, but it strengthens our resolve to hunt down perpetrators and bring them to justice," she said.
"Sexual abuse has a devastating and lifelong impact on the child victims and their families and that abuse is amplified each time images or videos detailing the crimes are shared."
Detective Superintendent Hudson said the AFP and ACCCE work tirelessly to protect children wherever they live and use a range of investigative techniques to detect anyone who preys on children – in person or online."
"We want to warn offenders they cannot stay anonymous online and the COVID-19 crisis has not shifted our focus from tracking down anyone involved in this vile behaviour."
"Use of encrypted applications and systems to share this distressing material will not protect you. We have the tools and capabilities to crack open your networks and arrest you."
Members of the public who have any information about people involved in child abuse and exploitation are urged to call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.
You can also make a report online by alerting the Australian Centre to Counter Child Exploitation via the Report Abuse button.
If you or someone you know are impacted by child sexual abuse and online exploitation there are support services available.
Advice and support for parents and carers about how they can help protecting children online can be found at ThinkUKnow, an AFP-led education program designed to prevent online child sexual explotation.
Note to media:
Use of term 'CHILD ABUSE' MATERIAL NOT 'CHILD PORNOGRAPHY'
The correct legal term is Child Abuse Material – the move to this wording was among amendments to Commonwealth legislation in 2019 to more accurately reflect the gravity of the crimes and the harm inflicted on victims.
Use of the phrase "child pornography" is inaccurate and benefits child sex abusers because it:
- indicates legitimacy and compliance on the part of the victim and therefore legality on the part of the abuser; and
- conjures images of children posing in 'provocative' positions, rather than suffering horrific abuse.
Every photograph or video captures an actual situation where a child has been abused.
AFP Media: (02) 5126 9297