Hidden recordings reveal paedophile’s repulsive act

A Logan paedophile who covertly recorded his 11-year-old stepdaughter as she slept, changed and showered was sentenced to 30 months imprisonment at the Beenleigh District Court on Tuesday.

The man, aged between 40 and 42 at the time of offending, pleaded guilty to 29 counts of indecent treatment of a child under the age of 16 while in care, four counts of making child exploitation material and one count of possessing child exploitation material.

The court heard the "perverted and bizarre" offending took place at a home in Eagleby, where the man lived with the child and her mother.

The victim was just 11-years-old when the offending began.
The victim was just 11-years-old when the offending began.

 

Crown prosecutor Elizabeth Kelso said the man had been in the girl's life since she was a toddler and she called him dad.

To the outside world, the man appeared to be a kind family man, working a steady full time job as a freight driver, fathering a second child and stepping up to take care of the household duties and bills when his partner became terribly ill.

The situation soured towards the end of 2018, however, when his stepdaughter started to feel as though she was being watched.

She told her mother she had a feeling someone was standing outside the bathroom door while she showered and using their mobile phone, slid under the crack in the door, to record her.

The mother didn't believe it and the man told her she was hallucinating.

His abuse escalated from there.

The girl told police in a formal interview that on one occasion when she was showering she looked up and saw a flashing light coming from behind the exhaust fan.

She "freaked out", ran to the bedroom and could hear the man walk to the bathroom and begin fiddling with the exhaust.

The man hid cameras in the ceiling exhaust and behind posters in the girl’s bedroom.
The man hid cameras in the ceiling exhaust and behind posters in the girl’s bedroom.

 

When questioned, the man told her he'd simply noticed something was stuck in there.

It was not the only hidden camera the girl found.

The court heard the man also taped a video recording device to the wall in her bedroom, concealed behind a poster with a hole cut in it.

At night, the man would creep into his stepdaughter's bedroom to film her while she was asleep, creating vast amounts of child exploitation material that depicted him masturbating over her, touching his penis to her mouth and licking her lips.

Her mother wept in court as the details were read by His Honour Judge Craig Chowdhury.

"You think if you're asleep at home then you're safe," Judge Chowdhury said.

"To come to the realisation that when you're asleep someone is taking advantage of you is heartbreaking and frightening."

The man, who cannot be named for legal reasons, appeared at the Beenleigh Courthouse on Tuesday.
The man, who cannot be named for legal reasons, appeared at the Beenleigh Courthouse on Tuesday.

 

According to a victim impact statement tendered to the court, this led to the child having problems sleeping, severe anxiety, depression and suicidal ideation.

Ms Kelso said the offending finally came to an end when the girl found one of his videos on her tablet and showed her mother, who identified the culprit as her partner.

The man confessed and apologised, promising he'd never do it again, but that didn't stop the woman from going to the police.

With their help, they located a further 54 videos recorded on eight separate occasions.

The court heard the material appeared to be for the man's personal sexual gratification and was not distributed to others.

"This is really perverted and bizarre offending," Judge Chowdhury said.

"You should have been looking after this girl, making sure she was safe and happy, and instead you abused your position to … gratify your unnatural sexual urges."

The man received a head sentence of two and a half years imprisonment with a parole eligibility date of November 19, 2021, meaning he will serve a minimum of seven months.

Originally published as 'Perverted, bizarre' hidden recordings reveal paedophile's repulsive act



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