Tuesday, April 23, 2024

Man jailed in first AI child abuse case for Tasmania

A Tasmanian man has been jailed for two years, for uploading and downloading child abuse material (CAM), which included content generated by Artificial Intelligence (AI), identified as part of a Tasmania Joint Anti Child Exploitation Team (TAS-JACET) investigation.

The conviction is the believed to be the first in Tasmania’s history relating to child exploitation material generated by AI.

The 48-year-old Gravelly Beach man was sentenced in the Launceston Supreme Court after pleading guilty to possessing and accessing child abuse material.

AFP Detective Sergeant Aaron Hardcastle said the investigation had been significant as it marked the first time Tasmanian Police had located and seized AI-generated child abuse material.

“Child abuse material, is still child abuse material, no matter what form it takes,” Det. Sgt Hardcastle said.

“People may not be aware that online simulations, fantasy, text-based stories, animations and cartoons, including artificial intelligence-generated content depicting child sexual abuse are all still considered child abuse material under Commonwealth legislation,” he said.

“Whether the image is AI-generated or depicts a real child victim, the material is repulsive and the Tasmania JACET Team, along with the AFP and its law enforcement partners, will continue to identify and locate those sharing this abhorrent content and put them before the courts.”

The TAS-JACET, comprising of AFP and Tasmania Police members, began an investigation in November, 2022, after receiving multiple reports from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) relating to an Australian-based user saving and downloading CAM from a website and social media platform.

Police identified the offender and executed a search warrant on 1 May last year at his Gravelly Beach home, where they seized a number of electronic devices, including the man’s computer.

An examination of the computer revealed hundreds of files containing CAM which included a significant amount generated by AI.

The man was subsequently arrested and charged. He has been sentenced to two years’ imprisonment with a non-parole period of 10 months.

Latest Articles