Virginia man charged for allegedly grooming friend’s child

by | May 13, 2021 | Cops | 0 comments

A 53-year-old Virginia man has been charged for child sex offences including grooming a child and possessing child abuse material, NT Police said.

Detectives from the Joint Anti-Child Exploitation Team (JACET) arrested and charged the man yesterday and is scheduled to appear in court today.

Police reported that the man allegedly rented a spare room from a friend in July 2019, when he began grooming the friend’s 11-year-old daughter.

After the family moved to South Australia, it is alleged the man remained in contact with the girl via social media and shared child abuse material with her.

NT Police and the AFP executed a search warrant on the man’s home yesterday where the located a mobile phone with “significant amounts of communication with the victim” over a year, including transferring child abuse material to her.

The man was charged with using a carriage service to groom a person under 16, indecent dealings with a child under 16, using a carriage service for child pornography, possessing child abuse material and possessing a less than trafficable schedule 2 drug.

“These sorts of behaviours are completely reprehensible,” said Detective Senior Sergeant Paul Lawson in a statement.

“This investigation shows the importance of multi-agency operations working together to identify and apprehend those in our community who pose a serious risk to the safety of the most vulnerable in our community.

“The Northern Territory JACET will continue to work tirelessly with national and international partners to keep the most vulnerable in our community safe.”

AFP Detective Superintendent Child Protection Operations Paula Hudson said the AFP will always exercise all available options to prevent the sexual abuse of children anywhere at any time.

“I commend the work of the NT JACET as they continue to take all necessary action to protect children from sexual exploitation,” Detective Superintendent Hudson said.

Police have urged anyone with information about people involved in child abuse to call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

Online reports can also be made by alerting the Australian Centre to Counter Child Exploitation via the ‘Report Abuse’ button at www.accce.gov.au/report.

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