The Department of Internal Affairs

Te Tari Taiwhenua | Department of Internal Affairs

Building a safe, prosperous and respected nation


Man sentenced for possession of child exploitation material

3 February 2021

A Wellington man was sentenced in the Wellington District Court on 3 February 2021 to 3 years imprisonment, forfeiture of all devices and will be placed on the Child Sex Offender register after being found guilty of possessing objectionable videos depicting the sexual abuse and exploitation of children, many of them including babies and toddlers.

Shay Joseph Middleton, 32, living in Upper Hutt was charged with the possession of child sexual abuse material.

“Any sexual offending against children is disturbing but, by sharing videos and photos of the offending, the victim is re-victimized every time this material is shared online” said Tim Houston, Manager of the Department of Internal Affairs Digital Child Exploitation Team.

“Offenders need to know that they will be found and held accountable for their offending, which is not only an offence against children, but an offence against our values as a society.”

This is Middleton’s second conviction for possession of child exploitation material. He was convicted in 2013 and sentenced to one year of intensive supervision community work.

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

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

If you are concerned about 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 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 |