Tasmanian man charged over accessing significant amounts of child exploitation material

A 27-year-old Tasmanian man has been today charged with child exploitation offences after authorities executed a search warrant at an Ulverstone property this morning (Wednesday, 2 December, 2020).

The Tasmanian Joint Anti-Child Exploitation Team (JACET), comprising Australian Federal Police (AFP) and Tasmania Police members, charged the man with accessing and possessing significant amounts of child abuse material.

The Tasmanian JACET executed the search warrant at the man’s Ulverstone home following reports to the Australian Centre to Counter Child Exploitation (ACCCE) via the National Centre for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) in the United States.

Investigators seized a mobile phone and a laptop computer from the property for further forensic analysis.

It will be alleged in court that the man was in possession of child abuse material and was uploading and sharing child abuse material to social media groups online.

The man has been charged with the following offences:

  • Possessing child abuse material accessed using a carriage service, contrary to section 474.22A of the Criminal Code 1995 (Cth)

He is expected to face the Devonport Magistrates Court this afternoon.

AFP Detective Sergeant Aaron Hardcastle said the AFP and its JACET partner Tasmania Police remain committed to identifying, targeting and prosecuting those seeking to harm children.

“Today’s arrest is another example of our tireless efforts to protect our community’s most vulnerable – our children,” he said.

“The Tasmania JACET will continue to work together to stamp out this abhorrent and vile industry. Make no mistake, the Tasmania JACET will spare no resource to track down and prosecute those who seek to bring harm to any child.”

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.

You can also make a report online by alerting the Australian Centre to Counter Child Exploitation via the Report Abuse button at www.accce.gov.au/report.

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

National Security Hotline

Read the AFP Annual Report 2020-21

The Australian Centre to Counter Child Exploitation

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