A 34-year-old Melbourne man accused of possessing child abuse material has been remanded in custody, after allegedly purchasing a new mobile phone to access additional child exploitation material while out on bail.
The Victorian Joint Anti-Child Exploitation Team (VIC JACET) had charged the Greenvale man with possessing child abuse material after executing a search warrant at the man’s property and seizing electronic devices, including a mobile phone, on 11 February 2020.
He was charged with child abuse possession offences and granted bail on 11 February 2020.
It is alleged a subsequent forensic examination of the man’s electronic devices identified 39 online communications between the man and persons under the age of sixteen. Further charges will be served in relation to the online communications, relating to following offences:
- Using a carriage service for child abuse material (S474.22 Criminal Code)
- Possessing, controlling, producing, supplying or obtaining child abuse material for use through a carriage service (S474.23 Criminal Code)
- Using a carriage service to transmit indecent communication to person under 16 years of age (S474.27A Criminal Code)
- Using a carriage service to procure persons under 16 years of age (S474.26 Criminal Code)
- Using a carriage service for sexual activity with person under 16 years of age (S474.25A Criminal Code)
On Thursday 21 May, VIC JACET investigators carried out a second search warrant at the accused’s Greenvale property where investigators allegedly discovered additional child abuse material on new electronic items.
It will be alleged in court that the man purchased a new mobile phone while on bail and downloaded additional child exploitation material.
The man will now face additional offences relating to:
- Possess Child Abuse Material (S.474.22A Criminal Code) and
- Commit an Indictable Offence whilst on Bail (S.30B Bail Act Vic 1977).
The maximum penalties for these offences are 15 years and 3 months imprisonment respectively.
The man’s bail was revoked after facing the Melbourne Magistrates’ Court yesterday. He has been remanded in custody and is due to face court again on 31 July 2020.
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.