Porn storm

The man will serve only nine months of the sentence, which is the maximum allowed under Tasmanian law.
Nanjing Night Net

John Trevor Gowland, 40, of Maydena, admitted possessing 37,279 images and 50 video clips of children either engaged in sex acts or portrayed in a sexual manner, Hobart Magistrates Court heard.

Gowland must serve a minimum nine months after pleading guilty to one count of possessing a child abuse product following a raid on his home as part of Operation Auxin on September 26.

The maximum penalty in Tasmania is one year or $5000.

Many other states have already begun increasing sentences.

Magistrate Peter Dixon yesterday told Gowland his crime warranted a maximum penalty.

He said a sample of images confirmed the abuse of children in an extreme way and some images depicted crimes in progress.

Mr Dixon said he had been unable to impose the maximum penalty in full, as it had to be reserved for the most serious cases and that he needed to consider Gowland’s early plea and lack of previous convictions.

Accounting for time already served, Gowland will be eligible for release in August.

Prosecutor Belinda Callinan told the court she believed the maximum penalty in Gowland’s case was insufficient due to the nature of the material.

Tasmanian Commissioner for Children David Fanning told ABC- TV last night the sentence highlighted problems with the current laws and said tougher penalties were needed.

“There wouldn’t be people requiring children, or demanding children, or giving them money, or exploiting children to pose and to be a party to that pornography unless people were viewing it,” he said. The State Government is due to announce the tougher laws and longer jail terms early next year.

Gowland was ordered to attend education programmes and counselling as part of his probation.

The court heard Gowland started loitering around schools and playgrounds after developing a fetish for children in the 1970s.

Prosecutor Belinda Callinan said that Gowland had been unable to stop accessing child porn online despite seeking psychiatric help.

“In every instance a child has been abused in order for the pornographic image to come into being,” she said.

“In my submission, they are directly contributing to the abuse of children because … supply creates demand.”

Some of the children in the images were aged under two.

Defence lawyer Sam Peart said that Gowland, a former surveyor and manager of an Internet centre, had shown remorse and handed over all his computer equipment after his arrest.

He said that there was no evidence Gowland had distributed the images, most of which were freely available on the Internet.

Mr Peart said that his client needed ongoing treatment for depression and obsessive compulsive disorder, having lost his job and suffered public humiliation over the case.

“The reality of his condition has been brought to a head by these proceedings,” Mr Peart said.

¤Meanwhile, a 49-year-old Launceston man was charged with possessing a child abuse product yesterday.

Tasmanian detectives working as part of Operation Auxin made the arrest after pornographic images were found on a seized computer.

Det. Acting Sgt Craig Joel, who was involved in the investigation, urged Tasmanian parents to educate themselves and their children about the risks of online exploitation.

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.