Strike Force Trawler charge man over online grooming in Sydney’s west

A man has been charged over alleged online grooming following an investigation by Strike Force Trawler detectives in Sydney’s west.

In March 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 west.

Police will allege in court that the man believed he was speaking with a 13-year-old girl and engaged in conversations about sex acts he wished to perform on the teenager.

Following extensive inquiries, strike force detectives, assisted by officers from the Operations Support Group (OSG) and Nepean Police Area Command, arrested a 39-year-old man at a home in St Marys about 8.30am today (Wednesday 6 May 2020).

Shortly after the arrest, investigators executed a search warrant at the home and seized mobile phones and electronic storage devices.

The man was taken to Penrith Police Station and charged with using a carriage service to groom persons under 16 years of age.

He appeared at Penrith Local Court today where he was formally refused bail to reappear at the same court tomorrow (Thursday 7 May 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: https://nsw.crimestoppers.com.au.

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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