Warning: Graphic content
A Catholic schoolteacher has been revealed as the paedophile who shared vile child sex messages that led police to catch disgraced TV presenter Ben McCormack.
The Daily Mail Australia reports that McCormack exchanged lewd messages via Skype with West Australian teacher Mathew Paul Reale.
Reale, a 30-year-old teacher from Perth, met with McCormack over Skype on April 30, 2015, court documents revealed.
"I'm 27, gay, single, love young bs (boys)", Reale said.
McCormack replied: "28 gay single love young bs too."
"Yummmm," said Reale.
McCormack: "(Ages) 7-12".
"U wanna f*** one, cool, 3-12 for me," Reale said.
McCormack used the username "oz4skinboi" but that wasn't enough to keep his identity secret.
It all started to unravel for Reale and McCormack on February 18 this year, more than 18 months after they began exchanging messages.
Police began putting together the clues from the chat logs.
In one of them, Reale said he had been "touching boys' bums' through their shorts".
McCormack said at one point he "loves chatting to pedos", to which Reale said "OK coolies".
A conversation between the two on January 1 was highlighted by the court as evidence that the chats were about their fantasies.
McCormack said: "But I do like naughty boys."
Reale said: "U eva think u'll play with one? Or just fantasy?" to which the journalist replied "I'd love to".
Reale was arrested in February for a series of child exploitation offences.
Police investigating Reale found his conversations with McCormack.
Despite McCormack never mentioning he was from "A Current Affair", detectives found references made by Reale in the chats to "Ben" and "A Current Affair".
These were enough to make them investigate further.
About one month later, police pulled McCormack over while he was driving and conducted what seemed to be a planned search in his car. Following that, they also raided his home and offices.
McCormack's lawyer says the TV reporter had been troubled by his thoughts about children for years and had been seeing psychiatrists.
McCormack has reportedly attempted suicide twice since his arrest, feeling guilty for what this situation has done to his family.
"It's not your mess I've created, it's mine," he wrote in a suicide note.
McCormack's Skype buddy Reale has pleaded guilty to one count of producing child exploitation material, nine counts of distributing child exploitation, and one count of using electronic communication with intent to procure a person under the age of 16 years for sexual activity.
He will be sentenced next year.
McCormack was today sentenced to a good behaviour bond for three years and fined A$1000 ($1100) at the Downing Centre District Court in Sydney.
He escaped jail on child porn charges because his "wish list" of sex with young boys was just "fantasy".
WHERE TO GET HELP:
If you are worried about your or someone else's mental health, the best place to get help is your GP or local mental health provider. However, if you or someone else is in danger or endangering others, call police immediately on 111.
Or, if you need to talk to someone else:
• LIFELINE: 0800 543 354 (available 24/7)
• SUICIDE CRISIS HELPLINE: 0508 828 865 (0508 TAUTOKO) (available 24/7)
• YOUTHLINE: 0800 376 633
• NEED TO TALK? Free call or text 1737 (available 24/7)
• KIDSLINE: 0800 543 754 (available 24/7)
• WHATSUP: 0800 942 8787 (1pm to 11pm)
• DEPRESSION HELPLINE: 0800 111 757 (available 24/7)
• SAMARITANS: 0800 726 666
• OUTLINE: 0800 688 5463 (confidential service for the LGBTQI+ community, their friends and families)
• RURAL SUPPORT TRUST: 0800 787 254.