Wednesday, May 29, 2024

Melbourne man sentenced for sexually abusing children overseas

A 61-year-old Melbourne man has been sentenced to 11 years’ prison today for sexually abusing children in the Philippines.

The man pleaded guilty in the Melbourne County Court to three counts of engaging in sexual intercourse with a child while outside Australia.

The Victorian Joint Anti-Child Exploitation Team (VIC-JACET) identified the Melbourne man following an investigation into an Australian citizen charged with child abuse offending in the Philippines in June, 2018.

The Australian citizen had paid for a child sex facilitator in the Philippines to procure underage children for sexual activity.

The Philippines National Police located and arrested the facilitator in February, 2019, and six children were rescued as a result.

“On 5 February, 2020, AFP members travelled to the Philippines to conduct interviews with the victims. During the interviews, the victims identified the Melbourne man and reported incidents of sexual abuse,” the AFP said in a statement today.

“Police arrested the man after he arrived in Sydney from Singapore in November, 2021, and he was extradited back to Melbourne where he was subsequently charged.”

He has been remanded in custody since November, 2021, and was today sentenced to 11 years’ imprisonment with a non-parole period of eight years.

AFP Leading Senior Constable Mark Sharer said the AFP is committed to protecting children both abroad and in Australia.

“Our investigators are committed to identifying these offenders wherever they may reside in the world,” Leading Senior Constable Sharer said.

“Trying to hide these abhorrent actions by travelling overseas will not stop us from locating offenders, seizing evidence and putting them before the courts.

“The AFP will continue to work tirelessly to identify and prosecute those preying on children.”

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