Australian authorities detect man with child pornography

By Sarah Murphy

A Dublin man whose use of child pornography was detected by Australian investigators has received a suspended jail sentence.

Philip Nolan (30) of Ambervale Estate, Tallaght, pleaded guilty to possession of child pornography in the form of text stories, images and videos at his home on May 4, 2011.

Dublin Criminal Courts of Justice 2 October 2016

Dublin Circuit Criminal Court heard that authorities in Queensland, Australia alerted gardai, via Interpol, about an Irish “internet protocol” (IP) address being used to access child porn.

Gardai connected this IP address to Nolan's home. During a search of the home in May 2011 they seized two laptops, a memory stick and a hard drive.

In January 2017 gardai carried out a forensic examination of these items and found a total of 106 child porn files, including images, videos and text stories.

The material images of pre-teen boys and girls with their genitals exposed.

Gardai also found “hentai images”, which are Japanese manga style cartoons.

Judge Pauline Codd said that an aggravating factor was that the material was accessed over a long period of time.

Nolan was 18-years-old when he began to research child pornography in 2006 and continued to do so until 2011.  

She said that Nolan had viewed the material for sexual pleasure. She said this was utterly reprehensible and that some of the images involved real children.

Judge Codd suspended a sentence of two and a half years on condition that Nolan attend a sexual offenders treatment programme.

The court heard Nolan was at low risk of re-offending, had no previous convictions and had not come to garda attention since.

Judge Codd noted that Nolan accepted responsibility for the offending behaviour and had expressed shame, guilt, sadness and regret.

Garda Alan Young told the court that after his arrest Nolan admitted downloading the material.

Detective Garda Donagh Mannix told the court that investigators recovered six text stories and said they were quite sexually explicit. He said one document was an 81-page story about pre-teen girls engaging in sexual activity.

He told John Quirke BL, prosecuting, that three of the images retrieved were at the most serious category of child pornography and involved teenagers between 15 and 16 naked on couches masturbating.

The court heard that the case was part of a larger Garda operation into paedophile activity online and that more serious cases had to be prioritised over this one.

The five year delay in examining the computer equipment was also caused by a shortage of analysts, Gda Mannix told Mr Colgan.

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