A Sydney man is accused of grooming a 13-year-old girl online before repeatedly sexually assaulting her.
Earlier this month, police received reports that a 36-year-old man from Mount Colah in Sydney’s north had met the girl for multiple sexual encounters after connecting with her through social media.
Following extensive inquiries, detectives from the State Crime Command’s Child Abuse and Sex Crimes Squad, stopped a vehicle in the Hornsby CBD and arrested a man on Monday afternoon.
A Sydney man is accused of grooming a 13-year-old girl online before repeatedly sexually assaulting her (file picture)
During the arrest, a mobile phone in the man’s possession was seized by detectives.
He was taken to Hornsby Police Station and charged with three counts of groom child under 14 years for unlawful sexual activity, three counts of intentionally sexually touch child (between 10 and 14 years), two counts of possess child abuse material, have sexual intercourse with child (between 10 and 14 years), meet child under 14 groomed for sexual activity, use carriage service to send indecent material to person under 16 and administer/attempt administer prohibited drug to another.
Police will allege in court that the man groomed the girl through social media before sexually abusing her on multiple occasions.
He was refused bail to appear at Hornsby Local Court on Tuesday.
Child Abuse and Sex Crimes Squad Commander, Detective Superintendent John Kerlatec, is urging parents to have conversations with their children about the risks of connecting online with people they don’t know.
‘Social media is wonderful tool to stay connected with friends and loved ones, but the platforms also provide opportunities for those not known to us to initiate communication – and this includes strangers talking to our children,’ Det Supt Kerlatec said.
‘It is so important that we remind children, that meeting with people they have only communicated with in an online environment, puts them at extreme risk.
‘We know the online environment is used by sexual predators to target children, so it is imperative that all young people know what to do if they are exposed to explicit or inappropriate conversations,’ he said.