Child porn collector gets suspended sentence

Karen Matthews   |  August 21st, 2012

A NORLANE man whose child pornography collection included vision of infants being sexually abused has walked from court on a suspended sentence.

Ronald Bentley, 44, of Moran St, Norlane, pleaded guilty in Geelong Magistrates’ Court on Monday to knowingly possessing child pornography.

Police prosecutor Leading Senior Constable Alana Jackson said police searched Bentley’s home on August 30 last year, seizing computers, external hard drives and a number of USB thumb drives.

“Forensic analysis revealed a Western digital hard-drive contained 944 images, 387 of which were naked children,” she said.

“A further 376 images were of comics/drawings of children engaged in sexual activity.

Sen-Constable Jackson said 73 images involved sexual violence.

“A total of 168 movie files were located,” she said.

Sen-Constable Jackson said two USB thumb drives contained a total of 35 images and 13 movie files of child pornography.

Adrian Paull, for Bentley, said his client received an email in 2008 with some child pornography attached.

“He became fixated, trapped in a cycle of downloading child pornography,” Mr Paull said.

The lawyer said his client was bullied at school, had difficulty showing his feelings and had since sought psychological assistance.

Mr Paull said Bentley, who runs a professional website known as The Beauty Academy, was also in the process of trying to start up a bakery in Geelong.

“Since his arrest, he has also been financially supporting Open Arms Cambodia, a charity formed to assist children who have been sexually abused,” he said.

Mr Paull submitted Bentley’s offending was at the lower end of the scale but Sen-Constable Jackson disagreed.

The prosecutor submitted the offending was at the higher end of the scale and called for an immediate jail sentence.

Magistrate Stephen Myall convicted Bentley and sentenced him to four months’ jail, suspended for two years.

Bentley would also remain on the Sex Offenders Register for eight years.


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