Par­ents’ abuse charges

Mum’s child sex counts fol­lows dad’s ear­lier ar­rest

Townsville Bulletin - - NEWS - CHRIS MCMA­HON chris. mcma­hon@ news. com. au

A MOTHER of three young chil­dren has been ar­rested and charged with child abuse of­fences fol­low­ing the ar­rest of her hus­band ear­lier this year.

A 32- year- old man was ar­rested in Char­ters Tow­ers on May 12 af­ter in­ter­na­tional child pro­tec­tion agencies worked with Queens­land po­lice to charge him af­ter he al­legedly shared images of him­self en­gag­ing in sex­ual acts with his three young chil­dren.

Po­lice ar­rested the 27- yearold Char­ters Tow­ers mother of the chil­dren last week for her part in the al­leged abuse, fol­low­ing months of po­lice in­ves­ti­ga­tions sur­round­ing child ex­ploita­tion ma­te­rial.

The three chil­dren were aged un­der five at the time of the al­leged of­fences.

To pro­tect the iden­tity of the chil­dren, the al­leged of­fend­ers can­not be iden­ti­fied.

Townsville Child Pro­tec­tion Unit of­fi­cer- in- charge de­tec­tive Se­nior Sergeant Dave Miles said po­lice would al­lege a child was forced to watch the par­ents en­gage in a sex­ual act.

“The charge is in re­la­tion to the on­go­ing in­ves­ti­ga­tion, where we have im­agery avail­able to us which has iden­ti­fied a child be­ing present while the par­ents en­gaged in sex­ual ac­tiv­ity,” Sen- Sgt Miles said.

“We are still go­ing through the ma­te­rial that has been made avail­able to us through our in­ves­ti­ga­tion and through other polic­ing agencies.

“We will al­lege it demon­strates that the chil­dren were ex­posed to adult be­hav­iours that is po­ten­tially dam­ag­ing to their de­vel­op­ment.”

Sen- Sgt Miles said de­tec­tives from Townsville and across the world were now try­ing to track down where the images may have been sent.

“What we are at­tempt­ing to do now is iden­tify from var­i­ous re­gions around the world where images aris­ing from this Char­ters Tow­ers fam­ily may have been made avail­able on the in­ter­net,” he said.

“We have to work back­wards from where the images were first lo­cated to find out where they have gone from this Char­ters Tow­ers home.”

The three chil­dren are no longer in their mother’s care.

The woman has been charged with one count of ex­pose a child un­der 12 to an in­de­cent act.

The fa­ther of the chil­dren was charged with three counts of mak­ing child ex­ploita­tion ma­te­rial, one count of dis­tribut­ing child ex­ploita­tion ma­te­rial, five counts of in­de­cent deal­ing with a child, three counts of in­de­cent acts and two counts of rape.

He re­mains in cus­tody.

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