http://www.smh.com.au/news/National/Teacher-sent-to-jail/2005/05/17/1116095964781.html

Teacher sent to jail

May 18, 2005

Natasha Wallace

The Christian private school teacher told female students to bring other clothes to class. On one “theme day”, he asked them to bring beachwear, and then sprayed them with water.

What the girls were unaware of was that Stephen Hilton Laws, a Bible studies teacher, had set up a video system behind two-way mirrors in the change room.

Yesterday, Laws, 34, was sentenced in Penrith Local Court to 37 months in jail, with a non-parole period of 29 months, after pleading guilty to 15 charges.

Laws was the first NSW person caught by police during the national Operation Auxin crackdown on child pornography, and has also received one of the toughest penalties, with only the most severe cases resulting in a custodial sentence.

Police had traced him through images of under-aged girls engaged in sexual acts he had stored on his home computer in Whalan. Raids on his home and the school led to the discovery of tapes of the schoolgirls getting changed.

Laws was charged with 22 offences but seven were dropped after he pleaded guilty to 15 – one of possessing child pornography, seven of installing a device to facilitate filming for indecent purposes and seven of filming for an indecent purpose.

 

http://www.smh.com.au/news/National/Teacher-admits-secretly-filming-girls-change/2005/05/12/1115843303657.html

Teacher admits secretly filming girls change

By Natasha Wallace
May 12, 2005 – 4:31PM

A former bible studies and photography teacher has pleaded guilty to 15 child pornography charges after he was caught secretly filming students getting undressed behind two-way mirrors in his classroom.

Stephen Hilton Laws, 34, of Whalan, taught at Allowera Christian School at Riverstone.

He had faced 22 charges, but eight were dropped in Penrith Local Court yesterday.

When police raided his home and classroom during the Operation Auxin child pornography investigation, they found tapes containing images of girls changing and a computer hard drive with downloaded images of underage girls engaging in sexual acts.

The father-of-three initially pleaded guilty but withdrew his plea on March 31 and disputed the number of charges against him. He will be sentenced on Tuesday.

Another man arrested during the Auxin operation, Craig Wayne Johnson, 42, of Marlee, was sentenced in Taree Local Court to six months’ jail after pleading guilty to two counts of possessing child pornography. He is appealing against the sentence.

 

http://www.smh.com.au/news/National/Teacher-withdraws-guilty-plea-to-filming-girls/2005/03/31/1111862507776.html

Teacher withdraws guilty plea to filming girls

March 31, 2005 – 12:18PM

A Sydney private school teacher who initially pleaded guilty to filming female students from behind a two-way mirror today withdrew his guilty plea and disputed the number of charges against him.

Stephen Hilton Laws, 34, was due for sentence today in Penrith Local Court on 22 charges of child pornography and non-consensual filming of female students.

The former bible studies and photography teacher allegedly set up a video camera behind a series of two-way mirrors in his classroom at a Riverstone school to film female students undressing.

A raid on his home and school premises found tapes containing images of girls changing, and a computer hard drive with downloaded images of underage girls engaging in sexual acts.

The father of three was one of the first people charged following last years Operation Auxin child pornography bust.

Laws today withdrew his guilty plea and requested the 22 charges of possessing child porn, installing devices to facilitate filming for indecent purposes, and filming for indecent purposes, be reduced to just three charges.

Prosecutor Mark Dukes told the court police opposed the request and wished to proceed on the original charges.

Registrar Leah Norman adjourned the matter for mention in the same court on May 12.

 

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