An inquiry into a large online paedophile network has revealed that a former worker reportedly sexually abused 16 children from one NSW Mid-North Coast childcare centre.
With 146 tip-offs to authorities in Europe, Asia , the United States, Canada and New Zealand, the Australian Federal Police (AFP) said the operation was one of Australia’s most significant efforts to target child abuse.
14 men, facing a total of 828 charges for child abuse offences, have been arrested by AFP and NSW Police.
The alleged suspects are accused of creating and distributing child exploitation content on a wide-ranging online network in Australia and abroad.
Investigations started in February following the arrest of Justin Radford, a 30-year-old Central Coast man, who was charged with 89 offences, including sexual touching of a victim under 10, and the creation and distribution of material for child exploitation.
“Police will allege the man used his position as a childcare worker, and other deceptive means in his personal life, to gain access to 30 children,” the AFP said in a statement.
“The man’s partner, a 22-year-old man, also allegedly abused children his partner accessed through deceptive means in his personal life.”
It is believed the childcare centre is not in the town of Kendall and parents of all victims have been notified.
A total 46 children are alleged to have been abused in connection with the ring, with ages ranging between 16 months and 15 years.