The Department of Internal Affairs

Te Tari Taiwhenua | Department of Internal Affairs

Building a safe, prosperous and respected nation


Christchurch man sentenced to 3 years for possession of child sexual exploitation material

4 August 2021

A Christchurch man has been sentenced to three years imprisonment in the Christchurch District Court today, after pleading guilty to a number of charges relating to the possession of objectionable publications depicting the sexual exploitation and abuse of children. This follows an investigation by Te Tari Taiwhenua, Department of Internal Affairs (DIA) Digital Child Exploitation Team.

Joshua Alan Bainton, 24, of Christchurch, was charged after child sexual exploitation and abuse material was located within a cloud storage account created and operated by him.

Bainton admitted creating multiple online accounts to view the material.

Tim Houston, Manager of DIA’s Digital Child Exploitation Team said that this investigation highlighted the importance of the detection, investigation, and prosecution of this crime and collaboration across enforcement agencies.

“Possessing and sharing child sexual exploitation and abuse material perpetuates a horrific cycle of revictimization. This is not a victimless crime. This material depicts a crime scene and the worst moments in a child’s life that has been captured and disseminated across the internet by offenders”

“Our priority is to ensure that anyone who distributes, makes and possesses objectionable material including child sexual abuse imagery is caught, prosecuted and sentenced.

The DIA Digital Child Exploitation Team was supported by the Christchurch Police Child Protection Team during this investigation. This partnership highlights the importance of law enforcement authorities working together to promote community safety.

"New Zealand authorities including DIA Digital Child Exploitation Team, NZ Police Online Child Exploitation Across NZ and NZ Customs Service Child Exploitation Operations Team work tirelessly together to target New Zealanders involved in the online exploitation of children" said Houston.

Bainton’s sentence includes the destruction of property used in the offending and he is required to register as a child sex offender.

If you are concerned that something you have seen may be objectionable or want to report a crime, you can report it to the Digital Child Exploitation team at DIA.

If you are the victim of a child abuse or sexual abuse crime,
Child Abuse: Directory for information and support
Safe to Talk: 0800 044 334 Text 4334

If you are concerned about your own activity online or someone else’s sexual behaviour, you should contact organisations such as,
Safe Network: 09 377 9898
WellStop: 04 566 4745
STOP: 03 353 0257
Or local treatment providers, or specialist therapists.

The Department of Internal Affairs uses the term child sexual abuse imagery. The term child pornography downplays the harm of child sexual abuse.


Media contact:

Te Tari Taiwhenua | Department of Internal Affairs
Media phone | +64 27 535 8639
45 Pipitea Street | PO Box 805, Wellington 6140, New Zealand |