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Northern Territory man charged with possessing child abuse material

03 February 2023, 1:19pm
Media Release

Northern Territory man charged with possessing child abuse material

A Northern Territory man, 38, has faced the Alice Springs Local Court (1 February, 2023) charged with possessing child abuse material.  

Police arrested and charged the man (1 February, 2023) after an investigation that began when Australian Border Force (ABF) officers examined the man’s baggage when he arrived at Darwin International Airport on a flight from Bali. 

During the search ABF officers allegedly found child sexual abuse material on his mobile phone. The matter was then referred to the Northern Territory Joint Anti Child Exploitation Team (NT JACET) for further investigation.  

Investigators from NT JACET, which comprises AFP and Northern Territory Police officers, executed a search warrant at the man’s Alice Springs home, where child abuse material was allegedly found stored on the man’s social media accounts. 

The man was charged with one count of possessed or controlled child abuse material outside of Australia, contrary to section 273.6(1) of the Criminal Code Act 1995 (Cth). 

The maximum penalty for the offences is 15 years' imprisonment.  

The man has been remanded in custody and will next appear in court on Monday (6 February, 2023).

AFP Superintendent Greg Davis said the arrest was a reminder that the AFP and its state, territory and international law enforcement partners continued to work collaboratively to protect children from harm.   

"Our common goal is to protect children, wherever they live, and to ensure anyone who tries to harm them is identified and brought before the courts," Superintendent Davis said. 

NT Police Detective Senior Sergeant Matt Akers said child exploitation in any of its forms is reprehensible.

“This investigation shows the importance of multi-agency operations working together to apprehend those in our community who pose a serious risk to those who are the most vulnerable.

“NT Police will continue to work tirelessly with our partners in law enforcement to ensure the safety of children everywhere,” he said.

The AFP and its partners are committed to stopping child exploitation and abuse and the Australian Centre to Counter Child Exploitation 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 and exploitation are urged to call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or If you know abuse is happening right now or a child is at risk, call police immediately on 000. 

Research conducted by the ACCCE in 2020 revealed only about half of parents talked to their children about online safety. 

An award-winning podcast launched last year by the ACCCE 'Closing The Net' is working to change that, showcasing that knowledge is power and that our only chance to help prevent this issue is if we bring a 'whole-of-community' response. 

The podcast series offers valuable tips and advice on how to keep kids safe online. Listen to the Closing The Net podcast on your favourite streaming platform. 

If you or someone you know are impacted by child sexual abuse and online exploitation there are support services available at

Advice and support for parents and carers about how they can help protect children online can be found at, an AFP-led education program designed to prevent online child sexual exploitation. 

Note to media: 


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. 

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