Man, 33, sentenced over child exploitation material
A MAN faced three child exploitation charges in Rockhampton District Court today despite police finding no evidence of child pornography on his computer.
Timothy Richard Ronlund, 33, pleaded guilty to two counts of using a carriage service to access child pornography and one count of possession of child exploitation material.
On August 19, 2015 police raided Ronlund's home and recovered marijuana and methamphetamine, but did not find any child exploitation material.
Ronlund then made an admission to police, saying he had copied and pasted a 1000-page story depicting child sexual abuse from an erotic fiction website to his computer, but had since deleted it.
The story in question described a male tutor grooming, fantasising and engaging in a sexual relationship with two 10-year-old female students.
Defence barrister Maree Willey told the court Ronlund only read stories displayed on the front page of the erotic fiction website and 'did not go searching for them'.
Ronlund was charged in 2004 with similar child exploitation offences after a police operation in America referred their investigation to the Northern Territory police.
The court heard computer belonging to Ronlund was found to contain 189 unique child exploitation images of children aged zero to 16.
He was found guilty in a Northern Territory court of 15 counts of selling, advertising or offering child pornography, seven counts of possession of child pornography, and one count of hindering police.
Ronlund was sentenced to four years imprisonment with release after 12 months and was required to attend counselling.
The defendant also had previous drugs and weapons charges from 2004, which he faced in Yeppoon magistrates court.
Ms Willey told the court Ronlund had continuing drug problems and was using marijuana and methamphetamine during both his 2004 and 2015 offences, but had since provided a clean urine sample.
The court heard from Ms Willey that although Ronlund could not escape his past history, there was a significant amount of time between offences and the current charges were similar but less serious.
Crown prosecutor Ryder Reid said although the story was fictional, material of the sort 'fuel the market', encourage real life offences and normalise child exploitation.
Judge Paul Smith told the court he believed through treatment Ronlund could be rehabilitated and would set a sentence with psychological treatment conditions.
Ronlund was sentenced to a recognisance release order of nine months for the charges of using a carriage service to access child pornography and two years probation for possession of child exploitation.
The probation conditions stipulate Ronlund must forfeit his laptop, seek permission to leave Queensland, attend counselling, not commit any more offences, receive medical psychiatric and psychological treatment and regularly attend visits with a correctional services officer for two years.