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Child porn man dodges prison

A former high-school teacher who downloaded more than 27,000 child pornography images has avoided jail because of his age and health.
Colin Francis Drake, 74, of Austins Ferry, admitted accessing, possessing and distributing child exploitation material.
Justice Shan Tennent yesterday said some of the images stored on his computer and an external hard drive were among the most serious categories of child pornography.
The images and videos depicted depraved sex acts between adults and children as young as three, and sex acts between children and animals.
Drake's crimes were discovered after he took the external disk to a computer store to have it repaired.
Staff contacted police when they saw images of naked children stored on the drive.
Police found it contained thousands of images and videos which had been sorted into 600 sub-directories.
They also recovered hundreds more images which had been deleted.
Justice Tennent said Drake used the images for his own gratification and she did not accept that his offending was the result of cognitive deficits caused by a stroke he had suffered.
She said an immediate prison sentence was warranted in such cases, but because of Drake's age and ill-health she had decided to suspend the term.
Justice Tennent imposed a sentence of 18 months' imprisonment, suspended provided Drake be of good behaviour for three years.
She did not order his name be placed on the sex offenders' register as she regarded him as unlikely to reoffend.

The Mercury (17-3-2011)
David Killick
http://www.themercury.com.au/article/2011/03/17/215121_scalesofjustice.html

Child porn catalogued

A retired high school teacher downloaded, catalogued and shared a collection of more than 27,000 child pornography images, the Supreme Court has heard.
Colin Francis Drake, 74, of Austins Ferry, has pleaded guilty to accessing, possessing and distributing child exploitation material.
Justice Shan Tennent yesterday heard that the well-known London-born botanist took a faulty 300-gigabyte external hard disk to a Hobart computer store in September last year.
Staff were able to get the drive working and contacted police when they saw images of naked children stored on it.
Crown prosecutor Allison Shand told the court that police examined the disk and found thousands of images and videos which had been sorted into 600 sub-directories.
They also recovered hundreds more images which had been deleted.
The images and videos depicted depraved sexual acts between adults and children as young as three, as well as sexual acts between young children and animals.
Police found further images on Drake's home computer along with a spreadsheet containing a list of websites and ratings.
Drake admitted accessing the material and said he became curious about child pornography after first being exposed to some in a pop-up on his web browser.
"I got caught," he told police. "I knew they were pornography. I did not realise the police were so efficient at following these things up. There is a lot of pornography there."
Drake also admitted swapping passwords to child pornography sites with other people and uploading some material from his collection.
He told police he gained sexual gratification from the images.
Defence lawyer James O'Shannessey told the court his client had qualified as a botanist in London and worked as a teacher at Taroona High School and Elizabeth College.
Since retiring, Drake had suffered two strokes which affected his ability to control impulsive responses and determine social appropriateness, he said.
"The course of conduct which brings him before your honour today is completely out of character," Mr O'Shannessey said.
Justice Tennent will sentence Drake on March 9.

www.themercury.com.au (24-2-2011)
David Killick
http://www.themercury.com.au/article/2011/02/24/209541_tasmania-news.html

Ex-teacher's child porn guilt

A retired high school teacher downloaded, catalogued and shared a collection of thousands of child pornography images out of curiosity, the Supreme Court in Hobart has heard.
Colin Francis Drake, 74, of Austins Ferry, has pleaded guilty to accessing, possessing and distributing child exploitation material.
Justice Shan Tennent heard Drake took a faulty 300 gigabyte external hard disk to a Hobart computer store in September last year.
Staff were able to get the drive working and contacted police when they saw images of naked children with naked adults stored on it.
Police examined the disk and found thousands of images and dozens of videos which had been sorted into 600 subdirectories.
They also recovered hundreds more images which had been deleted.
Crown Prosecutor Allison Shand told the court that the images and videos depicted depraved sexual acts between adults and children as young as three as well as sexual acts between young children and animals.
Police found further images on Drake's home computer along with a spreadsheet containing a list of websites and ratings.
Drake admitted accessing the material and said he because curious about child pornography after first being exposed to some in a pop-up in his web browser.
"I got caught," he told police. "I knew they were pornography. I did not realise the police were so efficient at following these things up. There is a lot of pornography there."
Drake also admitted swapping passwords to child pornography sites with others and uploading some of the material from his collection.
He told police he gained sexual gratification from the images.
Defence lawyer James O'Shannessey told the court his client had qualified as a botanist in London and worked as a teacher at Taroona High School and Elizabeth College.
Since retiring, Mr Drake has suffered two strokes which affected his ability to control impulsive responses and determine social appropriateness, he said.
"The course of conduct which brings him before your honour today is completely out of character," Mr O'Shannessey said.
He said being Drake had become largely estranged from his family since being charged and asked the judge to spare his frail and elderly client from prison.
Justice Tennent will sentence Drake on March 9.

The Mercury (23-2-2011)
David Killick
http://www.themercury.com.au/article/2011/02/23/209471_scalesofjustice.html

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