A 23-year-old man allegedly used a video-chat website to advertise his search for children to have sex with him.
In a joint operation by the Australian Federal Police and NSW Police, the Umina Beach resident was arrested on Thursday after the Australian Centre to Counter Child Exploitation received a report saying a man on Omegle was using the website to advertise his search for underage children for sexual activity.
Police allegedly linked the IP address and mobile phone number associated with the advertisement to the 23-year-old man.
Investigators received further information from NSW Police that the same man had allegedly been engaging with teenagers to procure them for sexual activity.
After arriving at the man’s home police seized a mobile phone, laptop, and several SIM cards, which will undergo forensic examination.
He was charged with using a carriage service to procure persons under 16 for sexual activity.
The maximum penalty for the offence is 10 years imprisonment.
Australian Federal Police Acting Sergeant Adam Barcham said the AFP worked closely with state and territory policing partners to ensure people who “seek to cause damage” to children were prosecuted
“Our partnerships mean we can share information at any point in time, during search warrants and even after an individual has been charged, and stop child predators before they can cause further harm to our children,” Sergeant Barcham said.
Members of the public who have any information about people involved in child abuse and exploitation are urged to call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or report online.