The Department of Internal Affairs

Te Tari Taiwhenua | Department of Internal Affairs

Building a safe, prosperous and respected nation


Jail sentence for child pornography trader


The Christchurch District Court today handed down a 4 month jail term on four Internet child pornography charges.

Judge Moran said that he saw six months imprisonment as the starting point for this level of offending, and reduced the term to four months because of his early guilty plea. Judge Moran also ordered forfeiture of the computer material seized under search warrant.

The Acting General Manager of the Department’s Gaming and Censorship Regulation group, Peter Burke, said that in December 1999 the man had been sentenced to five months periodic detention and six months supervision on 28 child pornography charges.

“New Zealand offenders who choose to continue trading child pornography will eventually be caught,” Mr Burke said.

In this case, a Department Inspector found a New Zealander, who was later identified as the offender, offering to trade child pornography in an Internet relay chat channel.

However, it is not solely the Department’s Inspectors who offenders have to worry about. In many cases information comes to the Department from overseas and from other New Zealand agencies.

In general terms, the Department focuses on Internet child pornography offending, Customs focuses on importation and the Police on physical offending.

“One of our strengths in New Zealand is that enforcement is broader because we each have our specialist areas and skills, while at the same time there is close cooperation between the agencies and we often share information and work together,” Mr Burke said.

“Our objective is to ensure that New Zealand plays a strong part in international action against sexual exploitation and abuse of children.”


In August 2002 a Department Inspector found a New Zealander using the nickname NewEmma, operating in Internet relay chat channels dedicated to trading child pornography.

NewEmma told the Inspector that he was interested in trading pictures of eight to 12 year old children, and sent the Inspector an image, which, from the file name, was of incestuous sexual activity.

Further investigations identified NewEmma as the offender and tracked him to a Christchurch address. A search warrant was executed on his home in March this year and a computer and floppy disks were seized.

Analysis of the computer showed that it had been used for searching for child pornography and was the machine from which the image was sent to the Inspector.

Media contact

Peter Burke
Acting General Manager Gaming and Censorship Regulation Phone 04 495 9456 Cellular 025 242 1447

Vince Cholewa
Communications Advisor Phone 04 495 9350 Cellular 025 272 4270