Fri, 05 Mar 2021

35-year-old Sydney man to face child abuse material charges

Australian Federal Police
22 Jan 2021, 16:04 GMT+10

**UPDATE: arrest footage now available on Hightail**

A Zetland man is set to face Sydney Central Local court today (Friday 22 January, 2021) charged with a series of child abuse material offences, following an Australian Federal Police (AFP) child protection operation.

The man was arrested after the AFP executed a search warrant at the man's Zetland, New South Wales property yesterday morning (Thursday 21 January, 2021).

Detectives seized a number of electronic items from the home, including two phones, two computers and two external hard drives.

AFP Child Protection Operations team in Sydney launched an investigation into the alleged child abuse material after reports from the National Centre for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) to the Australian Centre to Counter Child Exploitation (ACCCE).

It will be alleged in court the man accessed and downloaded almost 300 media files containing explicit images of young females and stored them on his Google Drive account.

The 35-year-old man has been charged with five counts of possessing child abuse material and one count of accessing child abuse material under the Commonwealth Criminal Code, which carry maximum penalties of 15 years' imprisonment.

AFP Detective Sergeant Jarryd Dunbar said the arrest was another example of the AFP's unrelenting commitment to target those seeking to harm our nation's most vulnerable - our children.

"Online offenders may believe they are anonymous but they are not. It doesn't matter where they live, the AFP together with our partners across Australia and around the world are keeping a watch on every corner to protect our children," he said.

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.

If you or someone you know are impacted by child sexual abuse and online exploitation there are support services available, visit the Australian Centre to Counter Child Exploitation to learn more.

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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