Police say man used modelling ruse to groom underage girls

A MAN has been accused of posing as a modelling agent on social media to connect with underage girls.

The 33-year-old man, who cannot be named for legal reasons, yesterday faced the Ipswich Magistrates Court charged with 112 charges including numerous charges of possessing and producing child exploitation material.

He is accused of 38 counts of using a carriage service to solicit child pornography material; 25 counts of using a carriage service to menace, harass or cause offence; 16 counts of extortion with intent to gain benefit with threat of detriment; 13 counts of procuring engagement in prostitution and nine counts of producing child pornography material and one charge of rape.

He has also been charged with three counts of using a carriage service to transmit child pornography, two counts of using a carriage service to transmit child pornography to self and one count each of sexual assault, common assault, unlawful stalking, using a carriage service to groom persons under 16 and unlawful possession of weapons.

He has been charged by police officers from the Moreton North Child Protection Investigation Unit under Operation Lima Tamper.

According to police they will allege the man used social media to connect with girls and women aged between 15 and 30, implying he was facilitating a modelling shoot.

Defence lawyer Julia Jasper applied for bail, which police prosecutor Sergeant Kevin Carmont opposed.

The court heard the man already has bail on 14 of the charges, and was applying for bail on the new 98.

Sgt Carmont applied for the bail hearing to be adjourned until today and said police might call the case investigator to testify at the application.

Ms Jasper said the man had a right for the application to be heard after he handed himself into police as per their agreement.

Magistrate Barbara Tynan suggested granting bail overnight before the remainder of the bail hearing this morning, stating the fact he had surrendered

However, Sgt Carmont said the man posed a risk if bail was granted.

"It should be said at one point of the risk of allowing this person back in the community," he said.

Magistrate Tynan adjourned the bail hearing until this morning. The man was remanded in custody.


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