Lalor man accused of attempting to groom children online

This is a joint media release between the AFP and Victoria Police

A 23-year-old man has been charged by the Victorian Joint Anti-Child Exploitation Team (VIC JACET) with allegedly using live video chat to record explicit conversations with children.  

The man was arrested on 24 January after investigators from the JACET – a partnership between the Australian Federal Police and Victoria Police – executed a search warrant at his home in Melbourne’s northern suburbs.

Investigators seized electronic devices when they searched the man’s Lalor home and a preliminary examination allegedly uncovered stored child abuse material.

The 23-year-old has been released on bail and is expected to face Melbourne Magistrate’s Court on 31 January 2020, charged with:

  • Using a carriage service to groom a person under 16 years of age, contrary to section 474.27(1) of the Criminal Code Act 1995 (Cth). The maximum penalty for this offence is 12 years imprisonment.
  • Using a carriage service to solicit child abuse material, contrary to section 474.22(1)(a)(iv) of the Criminal Code 1995 (Cth). The maximum penalty for this offence is 15 years imprisonment.
  • Possession of child abuse material obtained or accessed using a carriage service, contrary to section 474.22A(1) of the Criminal Code 1995 (Cth). The maximum penalty for this offence is 15 years imprisonment.

Members of the public who have any information about people involved in child exploitation material are urged to call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

Note to Media:

CHILD ABUSE MATERIAL, NOT ‘CHILD PORNOGRAPHY’

Use of the phrase ‘child pornography’ actually benefits child sex abusers:

  • It indicates legitimacy and compliance on the part of the victim, and therefore legality on the part of the abuser;
  • It conjures up images of children posing in ‘provocative’ positions, rather than suffering horrific abuse.

Every photograph captures an actual situation where a child has been abused.  This is not pornography.

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