A teacher from a prestigious Sydney school will spend at least the next two months behind bars after being accused of grooming a child online.
- NSW Police described the allegations as “very serious”
- The headmaster of Trinity Grammar School wrote to parents after the arrest
- He said there was no evidence “offences have been committed against students of the school”
NSW Police detectives said they arrested Alexander Simpson, 39, after tricking him into thinking he was speaking with a 13-year-old girl on the internet.
Police alleged he engaged in sexually explicit conversations and sent inappropriate photos to the alias using his mobile phone while he was at work.
Mr Simpson was handcuffed and loaded into a police van in front of students at Trinity Grammar School at Summer Hill in Sydney’s inner west on Thursday.
The teacher, himself a father, was charged with sending indecent material to a person under 16 and soliciting child abuse material.
After Mr Simpson was behind bars, investigators raided his house and seized electronic devices and clothes for forensic examination.
Detective Acting Superintendent Chris Goddard, commander of the child abuse and sex crime squad, said Mr Simpson faced “very concerning” allegations.
“A person in a position of trust such as a teacher and engaging in this type of activity, certainly of a significant nature — they are very serious charges,” he said.
He said coronavirus had forced more people online and children were at greater risk of predatory behaviour.
Mr Simpson’s case took just minutes to be heard in the Burwood Court today.
His lawyer, Alexandra Sarmed, told the magistrate the teacher was not applying for bail at this time and the matter was adjourned until October 28.
When asked outside court whether her client would be fighting the charges, Ms Sarmed said: “I have nothing to say at this point”.
Trinity Grammar School headmaster Tim Bowden wrote to parents about the accusations against Mr Simpson.
“A member of the teaching staff at the Summer Hill campus was placed under arrest by police from the child abuse squad,” Mr Bowden said in the message.
“I am relieved to be able to share that the police have informed me there is no suggestion that offences have been committed against students of the school.”
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