A 56-year-old man is expected to face Port Pirie Magistrates Court today (21 September) after being charged by the South Australia Joint Anti Child Exploitation Team (SA JACET) with possessing child abuse material.
The man was arrested and charged in May after an investigation sparked by a report from the United States’ National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC).
The report alleged that a suspected South Australian user had uploaded content to social media which depicted a young girl engaging in a sexually suggestive act.
Police will allege the account was connected to the 56-year-old and executed a search warrant at his home in May, where they allegedly found child abuse material on his electronic devices.
The man has been charged with possessing child abuse material obtained or accessed using a carriage service, contrary to section 474.22A of the Criminal Code 1995 (Cth).
The maximum penalty for this offence is 15 years imprisonment.
Australian Federal Police Detective Acting Superintendent Gavin Stone said officers in the SA JACET, which comprises AFP and South Australia Police, work tirelessly to protect children and bring to justice anyone who preys on them.
“The children who are forced into these unimaginable situations are continually re-victimised through every access and share of the content online,” Detective Acting Superintendent Stone said.
“Anyone who views this material shows a complete disregard for the emotional and physical trauma that these children experience and is complicit in the physical abuse.
“Potential offenders should be warned that law enforcement agencies around the world work together to pursue anyone who seeks to harm children.”
South Australia Police Detective Superintendent Mark Wieszyk said SAPOL are committed to detecting and identifying persons responsible for accessing and making child abuse material available.
“Working together with the AFP, our investigators aim to stop the exploitation of children and to rescue as many children as possible from this abhorrent crime.” Detective Superintendent Wieszyk said.
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.
For practical tips for parents, carers and schools to help keep kids safe, visit the ACCCE website.