WARNING: Confronting content
Being pelted with human excrement is just one of the possible scenarios facing ex-reporter Ben McCormack if he is sent to prison when he is sentenced on Friday.
McCormack risks the same fate as the sex predator Robert Hughes, who the former A Current Affair (ACA) journalist famously pursued in his own now-ruined television career.
As McCormack, 43, awaits his fate on child pornography charges, he faces a potential maximum 15 years' jail time.
While he is unlikely to get that lengthy a sentence — and might avoid jail altogether — in custody, McCormack would have the most reviled status in the prison hierarchy: child sex offender.
As such, he risks similar treatment to his one-time interview subject, former Hey Dad! star Hughes.
Following his May 2014 guilty verdict after a highly publicised trial, Hughes received a "prison welcome" from inmates at the maximum security Goulburn Correctional Centre.
On the disgraced former TV and stage actor's first walk into the jail yard, prisoners hurled cartons of faeces and urine at him.
The criminals had hoarded their own waste in milk cartons and unloaded on the new inmate, whose notoriety after weeks of media coverage had made him a prime target.
At the time, ACA and McCormack took credit for exposing the one-time sitcom star's sexual abuse and indecent assault of girls aged between six and 15.
Following his April 8, 2014 conviction on nine charges, Hughes was taken from the Sydney District Court by prison van to Goulburn Correctional Centre.
That evening, Ben McCormack joined Tracy Grimshaw live in the ACA studio to discuss his Robert Hughes scoop, tracking down the actor four years earlier in Singapore.
Asked to clarify the nature of Hughes' offences, McCormack described them as "horrific and disturbing, the first victim was 14 or 15 years old ... "
The following day, according to his status as a protection prisoner, Hughes was separated from other inmates in Goulburn's main prison yard area, known as "The Circle".
But, as a Goulburn officer revealed to Sunday Telegraph journalist and author James Phelps, a group of about 30 inmates were able to aim at Hughes through a wire fence.
Yelling: "Hey Dad! Cop this you kiddy-fiddling f***!" and other taunts, they hit him with their foul missiles.
The assault so traumatised Hughes, he sobbed on the phone to his wife Robyn Gardiner, the officer recounts in Phelps' book Australia's Most Murderous Prison.
A guard who overheard the conversation said Hughes told his wife he "can't stay here ... this place is hell. You have to get me out".
The brutal "jail justice" was meted out by men who may themselves have been murderers and rapists.
Goulburn jail management erected a special thick-wire screen, dubbed the "Hey Dad wall" by inmates, to protect the shamed celebrity.
Hughes is now more than half way through the six years he must at least serve of his maximum 10 year sentence.
McCormack could receive a shorter jail sentence after pleading guilty to two counts of using a carriage service to transmit, publish or promote child pornography.
This means he is unlikely to be sent to one of the heavier jails, such as Goulburn, Lithgow or Grafton.
Inmates on shorter sentences can serve time in lower security prisons such as Kirkconnell in the Blue Mountains, Mannus near the NSW-Victorian border or St Heliers in the Hunter Valley.
But the blaze of publicity over McCormack's arrest and the details of his vile sexual attraction to small boys may haunt him.
In Skype conversations with another paedophile, McCormack gushed about the "perfect bodies" of boys as young as seven.
He also said that he was a "proud pedo, proud b lover".
Immediately after receiving a custodial sentence, McCormack would be handcuffed and taken down to the cells below Sydney's Downing Centre court complex.
There he would have to wait for a prison van to take him away for processing.
Most first-time male prisoners are taken directly to the large and forbidding Metropolitan Remand and Reception Centre in the western Sydney suburb of Silverwater.
All fresh custodies must hand over their street clothing, undergo a strip search, don a new prison green T-shirt and shorts plus velcro Dunlop vollies and pose for the jail mugshot.
McCormack would be given a MIN (Master Index Number) which remains with him for life and any future returns to custody.
He would be put on watch in a single cell and interviewed by a prison psychiatrist.
His notoriety would deem him, like Robert Hughes, a protection inmate.
BOTTOM OF THE BARREL: PAEDOPHILES AND PRISON HIERARCHY
In jail, inmates who have killed, harmed or targeted defenceless living creatures — children, the disabled, old people or animals — are targeted.
In female prisons, women who kill (usually their own) children risk attack from other female inmates.
Harming or abusing inmates is a mark of showing one's superiority and scoring a kind of jail "brownie point".
In the prison pecking order, armed robbers and even murderers with adult victims are regarded as superior to sex offenders.
Rapists of adults are above child killers, who along with paedophiles are the lowest of the low.
It won't ease McCormack's prison life with inmates from a variety of ethnic backgrounds and social standings if anyone has a memory of his ACA career.
As a reporter chasing ratings he delivered the Nine Network genuine scoops.
But he was condemned as "racist" for a bogus report on "all-Asian mall" Castle Hill shopping centre.
In 2015, McCormack and ACA promised to champion the cause of a single mother who wanted to get off welfare and start a business.
The mother-of-five confided in McCormack about how much she received from Centrelink which was more than any wage-paying job.
McCormack then portrayed her as a welfare queen, living the high life off taxpayers' money.
Even today, the battling Melbourne mother suffers from the TV misrepresentation.
FREAK SHOW AT LONG BAY
One place for sex offenders like McCormack is a special unit among the suite of jails behind the razor wire fence at Long Bay Correctional Complex.
The sex offenders' wing includes some freakish looking individuals who share accommodation, yards and work areas.
The inmates include rapists, paedophiles and child pornographers.
They are housed at Long Bay and Cessnock prisons to access the Corrective Services NSW sex offender program CUBIT.
At Long Bay, the men can work in Corrective Services Industries (CSI) Textiles, making hotel curtains and tablecloths, and at the Reg Boys Bakery making bread and muffins for Sydney jails.
LIFE BEHIND BARS
McCormack's next court date in late November means that any custodial sentence would likely see him spend Christmas behind bars.
Prison food, designed to be nutritious and without harmful levels of salt or fat, is considered by most prisoners to be tasteless.
Produced by inmates for inmates under the "cook chill" method used in hospitals, it comes in three forms: Breakfast is a pack with dry cereal, jam, and sachets of coffee and sugar to go with milk and bread; lunch is sandwiches and a piece of fruit, eaten in cells while dinner is meat or pasta served in an aluminium foil tray.
Christmas lunch is usually a foil tray containing slices of chicken, potatoes, mixed vegetables and cranberry sauce, plus a fruit mince tart or cake slice.
Visits are banned on Christmas Day, but allowed on Christmas Eve and Boxing Day.
When visitors are permitted, inmates are strip-searched afterwards to search for contraband.
Regular searches are also made of cells to locate secret caches of drugs, mobile phones, weapons and other banned items like tattoo guns.
Due to the overcrowding, McCormack may have to share a four by three metre cell.
Cells have an open shower and little privacy other than a towel or blanket to hang between the bunk beds and the toilet bowl.
Following Ben McCormack's arrest in April this year, his lawyer Sam Macedone successfully argued that the former reporter had not traded in any images of children.
"There is no evidence that the images sent by the accused were of children in pornographic poses or activities," the agreed statement of facts reads.
Mr Macedone reiterated this fact, emphasising that his client had just engaged in "fantasy talk".
That talk included McCormack's statement on Skype: "I love talking to pedos".
Depending on what punishment Judge Paul Conlon decides on in the NSW District Court on November 24, McCormack may have every opportunity to do so.