Australia: FBI sting leads to arrest of Pilbara man allegedly accessing child exploitation images - - PressFrom - Australia
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Australia FBI sting leads to arrest of Pilbara man allegedly accessing child exploitation images

02:05  17 october  2019
02:05  17 october  2019 Source:   abc.net.au

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a man wearing sunglasses driving a car: Leon Bradley Peters has been charged with possessing child exploitation material. (Supplied: Facebook)© Supplied: Facebook Leon Bradley Peters has been charged with possessing child exploitation material. (Supplied: Facebook)

A Pilbara man has been granted bail after allegedly being found with more than 40,000 child exploitation images following a sting by authorities in the United States.

Leon Bradley Peters, 33, faced Karratha Magistrates Court on Tuesday, charged with one count of possessing the images.

According to details revealed in court, the videos and photos were allegedly found on his mobile phone, tablet and computer, which were seized after he was arrested in September.

The arrest came after covert officers from the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) tipped off WA Police following alleged discussions with a person they believed to be Mr Peters in an online chat forum.

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Prosecutor Lynn Barbour said officers explained the images were such that "once you see them, you can't un-see it".

Sergeant Barbour said WA technology crime squad police had found more than 75 folders and Dropbox links of a graphic nature.

She added that investigations so far had allegedly uncovered 13 images of children aged as young as three and four among the photos and videos.

Mr Peters' court appearance was held via video link from Roebourne Prison where he is being held.

No access to the internet

Magistrate Michelle Ridley, who had previously considered bail at hearings in September but had asked for more information before making a judgment, said she was satisfied there had been "no personal contact" with children by Mr Peters.

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Despite Sergeant Barbour stating police opposed bail, it was granted with conditions, including that Mr Peters have no access to devices that can access the internet.

In support of bail, legal aid duty counsel Laila Hughes said no new charges had arisen during investigations.

"There is certainly no suggestion that there has been any other offending in the community other than possession of the material," she said.

As part of his bail, Ms Ridley stipulated that Mr Peters must surrender his passport, have no contact with children under 16 unless an adult is present, that he not go within a kilometre of domestic or international airports, and that he report to police twice weekly.

Mr Peters has applied for legal aid and is due to front court again on November 26.

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