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CDPP v Davies (a pseudonym)

The offender was sentenced following pleas of guilty to 10 counts of using a carriage service to transmit indecent communication to a person under 16 contrary to s 474.27A(1) of the Commonwealth Criminal Code, 7 counts of using a carriage service to solicit child abuse material contrary to s 474.19(1) of the Commonwealth Criminal Code, 2 counts of using a carriage service to cause offence contrary to s 474.17(1) of the Commonwealth Criminal Code and single charges of failing to comply with reporting obligations, using a carriage service to cause child abuse material to be transmitted to yourself, possessing or controlling child abuse material obtained or accessed using a carriage service and using a carriage service to procure a person under 16. Two additional carriage service offences taken into account pursuant to s 16BA.

Nature and Circumstances: Disparity between offender’s age (24 years) and victims varied (12-17 years). Although some of the charges involve children exposing parts of their bodies, none of the images involve physical harm to them. There was no commercial aspect to offender’s activities. Offender made no attempt to disguise their identity. Offender acted alone and not as part of a group or network.

Mental Condition: Offender was assessed by a neuropsychologist as having an IQ of 48, placing them in the category of persons with a moderate intellectual disability. Offender’s moral culpability is reduced as a result of the effects of the offender’s intellectual disability upon their judgment and decision-making capacity. Need for general deterrence is greatly reduced as, owing to the extent of the offender’s disability, few would identify with the offender. Offender’s disability causes them difficulty in accepting responsibility for what they have done and in understanding the effect of their actions on victims. Imprisonment will be more onerous for the offender than persons without the offender’s disability, even though they are currently in a specialised unit.

Guilty Plea: Timing of pleas was early in the process. Guilty pleas have spared upwards of 117 witnesses the burden of giving evidence in a trial. Giving evidence is not easy, especially for those who are young and have no experience of a trial environment. In offender’s case, there are a significant number of child witnesses. Guilty plea is also evidence of remorse. Offender has difficulty realising the wrongfulness of their actions because of their disability. Despite this, there is an element of remorse present.

Offender sentenced to 63 months imprisonment with a non-parole period of 27 months.
The CSD acknowledges Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples as First Australians and recognises their culture, history, diversity and their deep connection to the land. We acknowledge that we are on the land of the traditional owners and pay respects to Elders past and present.

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