Troy John Peters granted bail in Tamworth after admitting to possessing child pornography

AN EAST Tamworth man who admitted to downloading child pornography has been released on bail by the district court a day after a magistrate locked him up, saying he was a danger to the public.

Troy John Peters lodged an urgent bail application in Tamworth District Court on Friday morning, less that 24 hours after he had his bail revoked in the local court by Magistrate Roger Prowse.

Peters, 39, admitted on Thursday to possessing child abuse material and using a carriage service to access child pornography material – a charge that carries a maximum of 15 years in prison.

A police prosecutor, acting as agent for the Commonwealth DPP, said the DPP “have no objection to bail continuing”.

“Well that’s reprehensible,” Mr Prowse replied.

“He should have never have been admitted to bail in the first place.”

Oxley detectives raided an East Tamworth home in May after officers traced Peters’ address from a website used to share child pornography.

Officers seized a laptop, Ipad and Iphone from the home and discovered a Dropbox account which had accessed 57 videos and 157 images in April, this year, and the account was found “to contain 552 images and 72 video files”.

The material was classified using the Child Exploitation Tracking Scheme (CETS) scale and found the majority of images were in the category two and four areas, and one in the sixth category of a child being physically restrained and sexually assaulted.

According to facts tendered in court, police said the “some of the children depicted in the images appeared to be below the age of three years”.

Oxley detectives arrested Peters on June 6 and charged him with four offences.

Agent solicitor Garry Johnston said his client had complied with bail, which included not accessing the internet, at all times since he was charged, and asked for it to continue.

“For matters of this, they don’t always result in a full time custodial sentence,” he told the court, adding they were seeking specialist reports on Peters ahead of sentencing.

Mr Prowse said there was no way the bail condition prohibiting him from accessing the internet could be monitored.

He said Peters had “lied to the coppers through his back teeth” when questioned about the material, and had assumed an online identity to download the images and video.

“To quote Justice Hulme it would be an affront to justice … in view of the plea of guilty, if the wholly inadequate bail was allowed to continue,” he said.

“The protection of the public is paramount.”

Mr Prowse said Peters was a risk of endangering the community and committing further offences and “consequently bail is refused”.

“There was a high level of criminality of images and video of considerable revulsion,” he said.

“A reprehensibly inexplicable decision of the crown to continue bail.”

He spent one night in custody before he was granted conditional bail by Acting Judge Colin O’Connor after the court was told “there is no unacceptable risk as far as the accused is concerned”.

He will be sentenced in the district court in February.

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