Sydney man jailed for online child abuse offences
An Auburn man was sentenced yesterday (23 May, 2023) to four years’ imprisonment by the Sydney Downing Centre for possessing, transmitting and controlling child abuse material.
The man, 34, was identified during a US Department of Homeland Security Investigation (HSI) investigation targeting Australians who were using social media and other chat applications to access and share child abuse material.
The AFP’s Child Protection Operations team investigated and executed a search warrant at the man’s home in April, 2022.
Police seized four devices which were found to contain about 20 gigabytes of child abuse material. They also found the man had accessed more than a dozen child abuse material forums across multiple encrypted messaging platforms.
The man pleaded guilty on 8 February, 2023 to the following offences:
- One count of using a carriage service to transmit child abuse material, contrary to section 474.22(1) of the Criminal Code Act 1995 (Cth);
- Two counts of using a carriage service to cause child abuse material to be transmitted to self, contrary to section 474.22(1) of the Criminal Code Act 1995 (Cth);
- One count of using a carriage service to access child abuse material, contrary to section 474.22(1) of the Criminal Code Act 1995 (Cth); and
- One count of possessing and/or controlling child abuse material obtained or accessed using a carriage service, contrary to section 474.22A(1) of the Criminal Code Act 1995 (Cth).
He was sentenced to four years’ imprisonment with a non-parole period of two years.
Senior Constable Erico Kusnandar said the AFP worked closely with local and international partners to protect children.
“Our message to online offenders has not changed. If you procure, access and transmit child abuse material, you will be found, arrested and prosecuted,” Sen-Con Kusnandar said.
“This is not a victimless crime. Children are not commodities to be used for the abhorrent gratification of sexual predators.”
The AFP and its partners are committed to stopping child exploitation and abuse and the Australian Centre to Counter Child Exploitation (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.
For more information on the role of the ACCCE, what is online child sexual exploitation and how to report it visit www.accce.gov.au.
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