The Department of Internal Affairs

Te Tari Taiwhenua | Department of Internal Affairs

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Conviction highlights true nature of child pornography


The conviction on Friday afternoon of a North Shore man on child pornography charges highlights the true nature of Internet child pornography.

The defendant pleaded guilty to trading and possession of pictures of girls aged from two months to 10 years in sexual explicit poses and being abused by adult men.

The Manager of the Department of Internal Affairs’ Gaming and Censorship Regulation Group, Keith Manch, said that New Zealanders should be under no illusion about what child pornography is.

“We are not dealing with erotica or images from R18 magazines,” Mr Manch said. “These are images of young children, even babies, being sexually abused.

“The images involved in such cases are often so offensive that the media rightly avoid describing them fully. This sometimes leads to a lack of understanding by the public of the enormity of the crimes against children portrayed.

“Tragically, the pictures are real. To create each image a child is abused or debased for the ‘pleasure’ of an international market.”

In this case, none of the victims were New Zealand children, and most child pornography in New Zealand is sourced from overseas. Part of the Department’s role is to contribute to international efforts to prevent sexual abuse of children.

In April last year, a Department officer detected a New Zealander operating in the area of Internet relay chat using a channel dedicated to trading child pornography.

The New Zealander was using the nickname “Choc18” and told the Officer he wanted to trade images of pre-teenage children. He sent the Officer four objectionable picture files of girls aged four to six years.

Choc18 was traced through the Internet to a North Shore address and identified as the defendant.

In June, Department staff executed a search warrant on his house. His computer was seized and amidst the images another 19 objectionable picture files were found.

The defendant admitted that he was Choc18, sending the images to the Department Officer and that he had been operating in the child sex channel for two months.

In the North Shore District Court he pleaded guilty to four charges of trading child pornography and 10 of possession. He was fined $2,500 and ordered to do 200 hours community work. The Court also ordered forfeiture and destruction of his computer and computer accessories.

He is a 24-year-old technician and production worker.


The Films, Videos and Publications Act 1993 prohibits objectionable material, including child pornography. Penalties include fines of up to $20,000 or up to one year in jail per charge for trading objectionable material, and fines of up to $2,000 per charge for possession.

In March this year, the Government announced that it intends to increase the maximum penalty for trading child pornography to 10 years jail and that for possession to two years jail.

Media contact:

Keith Manch
General Manager Gaming and Censorship Regulation Phone 04 495 9449, Cellular 027 445 6420

Vincent Cholewa
Communications Advisor Phone 04 495 9350, Cellular 025 272 4270