South Australian man charged with possessing child abuse material

Child_Exploitation

This is a joint release between Australian Federal Police and South Australia Police. 

An Adelaide man is expected to face Adelaide Magistrate's Court today (Friday, 22 October 2021) charged with child abuse-related offences by the South Australia Joint Anti Child Exploitation Team (SA JACET).

The investigation began after the AFP-led Australian Centre to Counter Child Exploitation (ACCCE) received a report from the United States' National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) regarding child abuse material (CAM) being uploaded to a Google Photos account.

Investigators from SA JACET, which comprises AFP and South Australia Police officers, allegedly linked the 42-year-old Adelaide man to the Google Photos account.

A search warrant was executed at the man's residence on 17 August 2021. Two data storage devices were allegedly found to contain a quantity of CAM, including material stored within a Google Photos account.

The 42-year-old was charged with:

  • Two counts of possessing child abuse material accessed or obtained using a carriage service, contrary to section 474.22A of the Criminal Code Act 1995(Cth); and
  • One count of using a carriage service to access child abuse material, contrary to section 474.22(1)(a)(i) of the Criminal Code Act 1995(Cth).

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

AFP Detective Superintendent Gail McClure said the COVID-19 crisis had not distracted investigators from tracking down perpetrators who harm children.

"Anyone who views or uploads this material is harming a child, and helping to prop up a vile industry that will abuse more children to satisfy the demand," Detective Superintendent McClure said.

"Children being abused in these horrendous videos and images are re-victimised every time someone downloads and shares that file."

SA Police Detective Superintendent James Blandford said this was another ongoing example of how police in cooperation with each other are a powerful force against the evils of child abuse. 

"The exploitation of children to satisfy the perverse self-interest of individuals is a grotesque and incredibly selfish indulgent," Detective Superintendent Blandford said.

"Offenders do not view, download and keep child abuse material by accident. It is a deliberate act which drives and perpetuates debilitating trauma on children across the globe and is behaviour which is condemned in our Australian society as rightfully abhorrent." 

The ACCCE is committed to stopping child exploitation and abuse and is at the centre of a collaborative national approach to combatting organised child abuse.

The Centre brings together specialist expertise and skills in a central hub, supporting investigations into child sexual abuse and developing prevention strategies focused on creating a safer online environment.

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 or report online.

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 protection children online can be found at ThinkUKnow, an AFP-led education program designed to prevent online child sexual exploitation.

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.

Media enquiries

AFP Media: (02) 5126 9297

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Read the AFP Annual Report 2020-21

The Australian Centre to Counter Child Exploitation

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