WA man jailed for child abuse offences
This is a joint media release between the Western Australia Police Force and the Australian Federal Police
A 20-year-old WA man was jailed on Thursday (14 October 2021) for 13 years and four months' on 116 offences, including the sexual abuse of five boys, after he was linked to an alleged national online child exploitation network.
The man was sentenced in the Perth District Court after pleading guilty in June (2021) to the offences, which also included recording some of the abuse and sharing videos and footage online with other alleged offenders.
The Gosnells man first came to the attention of the Western Australia Police Force Child Abuse Squad as a 19-year-old in early 2019 and detectives charged him with possessing child exploitation material found on his mobile phone.
In May (2020), Australian Federal Police allegedly identified the same man was discussing abusing a child and sending horrific videos to a NSW man, who had been charged as part of Operation Arkstone.
As a result of ongoing inquiries the Gosnells man was charged with abusing five boys between 2014 and 2020, with the victims aged between 3 and 11 at the time he first abused them.
The now 20-year-old man must serve 11 years and two months' imprisonment before becoming eligible for parole. He is one of 21 men across Australia who have been charged by the AFP or State Police, since the AFP launched Operation Arkstone in early 2020.
Operation Arkstone led to the discovery of an online network of alleged child sex offenders producing and sharing child abuse material on social media and as a result, police have been able to help 55 child victims.
Investigations into this network of child abuse are continuing.
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.
If you or someone you know are impacted by child sexual abuse and online exploitation there are support services available, visit the ACCCE to learn more.
Media are reminded it is an offence to publish or broadcast details which may identify a victim of a sexual offence, including the age of the victim or how the offender had access to a child.
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