WA man in court on alleged online child abuse offences

This is a joint media release between the Australian Federal Police and Western Australia Police Force

A 41-year-old man is expected to face Perth Magistrate's Court today (26 March 2021) after being charged by the Australian Federal Police with allegedly accessing and possessing child abuse material.

As part of a previous unrelated joint AFP and WA Police Force investigation, detectives executed a search warrant in Kalamunda in October 2020, which resulted in a mobile phone being seized.

An AFP digital forensic examiner allegedly found child abuse material stored on the phone, which included photographs and animated images of children being sexually abused. Data on the phone also allegedly showed visits to web sites containing incest and child abuse material.

On 4 March 2021, the 41-year-old was questioned and charged in relation to the alleged child abuse material offences.

He is expected to appear in court today for:

  • Using a carriage service to access child abuse material, contrary to section 474.22A of the Criminal Code Act 1995 (Cth);
  • Possessing or controlling child abuse material obtained or accessed using a carriage service, 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.

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 make a report online via the Australian Centre to Counter Child Exploitation.

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 2019-20

The Australian Centre to Counter Child Exploitation

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