A long-serving Hawke's Bay podiatrist has been sentenced to four and a half years' jail for his part in child pornography distribution uncovered in the United States.
Neville Bruce Crockett, 62, of Napier, who has more than 35 years experience as a podiatrist in New Zealand and the UK and has been based in Hawke's Bay since at least 2002, was sentenced in Napier District Court yesterday, having pleaded guilty to two representative charges of possessing objectionable publications, seven of making a copy for distribution and one of obstruction.
Computer equipment, containing over 5000 files of child sex abuse, was seized from his home in a Department of Internal Affairs investigation US authorities reported Crockett had tried to email pictures of young children being sexually abused.
Department investigators said Crockett tried to conceal a USB drive during the search and had used many computer applications to conceal his activity. He had visited two "dark web" child sexual abuse websites have since been closed down by the FBI.
Judge Geoff Rea in said Parliament had in May 2015 sent a message that there was zero tolerance for this offending, by doubling the maximum penalty for possessing objectionable publications to 10 years' imprisonment.
In a media release later yesterday, DIA censorship compliance manager Stephen Waugh said the Department continues to work closely with international agencies to detect those people using the Internet to traffic in child sexual exploitation and abuse material.
"We continue to meet the challenges presented to us by persons who attempt to conceal their offending from us and our international partners," he said. "We work towards ensuring our community is safe from this material and its effects, material that always represents abuse to a child victim. This is not a victimless crime."
Crockett's sentencing followed that in Tauranga the previous day of 56-year-old David Frederick Moore, 56, general caretaker, of Tauranga, who was sentenced to two years' jail after pleading guilty to four charges of making a copy of an objectionable publication for distribution and one representative charge of possessing objectionable publications. He was convicted in 2008 of possessing objectionable images.
Internal Affairs inspectors discovered almost 4000 objectionable pictures or videos on computer equipment seized from his home.
The Department was tipped off by the United States' National Centre for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) that Moore had uploaded objectionable material on a social networking website.