Strike Force Trawler charge man over online grooming

Strike Force Trawler investigators have charged a man following an investigation into alleged online grooming in Sydney’s north west.

In July this year, detectives from the Child Abuse and Sex Crime Squad’s Child Exploitation Internet Unit (CEIU) began engaging online with a man from Sydney’s Upper North Shore.

Police will allege in court that the man believed he was speaking with the 39-year-old mother of a nine-year-old girl and engaged in sexually explicit conversations about acts he wished to perform on the child and sent sexually explicit material.

It will also be alleged that the man arranged to meet the woman and child in person.

Following extensive investigations, strike force detectives arrested a 56-year-old man at Hornsby Police Station about 8am today (Tuesday 15 September 2020).

Shortly after, officers executed a search warrant at a home near Wahroonga and seized a mobile phone, computers and electronic storage devices.

All items seized will undergo further examination.

The man was charged with use carriage service to groom under 16 years for sex with another, use carriage service to do/plan harm to person under 16 years and use carriage service transmit/publish/promote child abuse.

He was refused bail and appeared at Hornsby Local Court today, where he was formally refused bail to reappear at the same court on Tuesday 10 November 2020.

Strike Force Trawler is an ongoing investigation by the CEIU into the sexual abuse and exploitation of children facilitated through the internet and related telecommunications devices.

Regular covert online investigations are conducted by the CEIU; and police in NSW work closely with their law-enforcement colleagues interstate and overseas.

The Child Abuse and Sex Crimes Squad is comprised of detectives who are specially trained to investigate matters against children and adults, including sexual assault, serious physical abuse, and extreme cases of neglect.

Anyone with concerns about suspected child abuse or exploitation should call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or use the Crime Stoppers online reporting page:

Information you provide will be treated in the strictest of confidence. People should not report crime information via our Facebook and Twitter pages.

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