This is a joint release between Australian Federal Police and Western Australia Police Force
A Queensland man has faced Armadale Magistrates Court in Western Australia today (23 May, 2023) charged with possessing child abuse material.
The WA Joint Anti-Child Exploitation Team (JACET), which comprises AFP and WA Police Force, arrested and charged the man yesterday (22 May, 2023).
Police allegedly identified the man, 25, during an investigation into reports from the United States' National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) about a user uploading and distributing child abuse material online.
The report outlined thousands of child exploitation images and video files uploaded to Dropbox and Google platforms and the AFP allegedly linked the man to the illegal online activity.
Police executed a search warrant yesterday at an Armadale property where the man was residing, with investigators allegedly finding a large amount of child abuse material on a mobile phone.
The device will be subject to further forensic examination.
The man is next expected back in court in Armadale on 23 June (2023).
AFP Detective Inspector Andrea Coleman said the AFP worked closely with international partners, including the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, to protect children, no matter where they resided.
"The possession of child abuse material is not a victimless crime. Those who upload, share and distribute this material are fuelling the harm that occurs to victims of these abhorrent crimes," Det-Insp Coleman said.
"The AFP, together with our state, Commonwealth and international law enforcement partners, remains committed to relentlessly pursuing those who harm our community's most vulnerable - our children.
"Those who seek out child exploitation online material should be warned - we will identify you and bring you to justice, no matter where you are in the world."
The man was charged with possessing child abuse material accessed or obtained using a carriage service, contrary to section 474.22A of the Criminal Code Act 1995 (Cth).
The maximum penalty for the offence is 15 years' imprisonment.
The AFP and its partners are committed to stopping child exploitation and abuse and the Australian Centre to Counter Child Exploitation (ACCCE) is driving a collaborative national approach to combatting child abuse.
The ACCCE brings together specialist expertise and skills in a central hub, supporting investigations into online child sexual exploitation and developing prevention strategies focused on creating a safer online environment.
Members of the public who have information about people involved in child abuse are urged to contact the ACCCE at www.accce.gov.au/report. If you know abuse is happening right now or a child is at risk, call police immediately on 000.
If you or someone you know is impacted by child sexual abuse and online exploitation, support services are available at www.accce.gov.au/support.
Research conducted by the ACCCE in 2020 revealed only about half of parents talked to their children about online safety. Advice and support for parents and carers about how they can help protect children online can be found at www.thinkuknow.org.au, an AFP-led education program designed to prevent online child sexual exploitation.
For more information on the role of the ACCCE, what is online child sexual exploitation and how to report it visit www.accce.gov.au.
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.
AFP Media: (02) 5126 9297
Connect with us:
Follow our Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram and YouTube pages to learn more about what the AFP does to keep Australia safe.
Follow the ACCCE Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube pages to learn more about what the ACCCE does to keep children safe online.