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Australian childcare worker charged with over 1600 counts of sex abuse of 91 children

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This representational picture shows a child playing with toys. — Unsplash/File
This representational picture shows a child playing with toys. — Unsplash/File

A former daycare worker from Australia has been charged with more than 1,600 counts after allegedly sexually abusing 91 children, filming it, and then spreading the footage online.

In one of the most “horrific” instances they have ever encountered, police claim the guy preyed on young girls for over 15 years at a dozen institutions in Australia and abroad before being apprehended in August 2022.

However, it took the police a year to investigate and identify the alleged victims.

The 45-year-old man is facing 246 counts of rape and 673 counts of indecent assault against children, with the most serious charges carrying a maximum of life imprisonment.

Additionally, he is also facing hundreds of charges for filming and distributing child abuse material, as the police claim that he recorded all of his abuse and found 4000 images and videos on his electronic devices.

The alleged crimes occurred in 10 childcare establishments in Queensland, one in New South Wales, and one in an unspecified foreign country.

The Australian Federal Police (AFP) said it is “highly confident” that the man did not commit a crime while employed at other daycare centres, despite the fact that he did.

Speaking to the media on Tuesday, AFP Assistant Commissioner Justine Gough said the case would be “deeply distressing” for the community.

“It’s beyond the realms of anyone’s imagination, what this person did to these children. You try not to be shocked after a long period of time in the police… but this is a horrific case,” she said.

Australian authorities have identified 87 alleged abuse victims, some of whom are adults, and are working with international counterparts to contact the remaining four victims.

Investigators claim that they were able to identify the man’s past through child abuse material found at one of the childcare facilities he worked at, which led to his arrest, the BBC reported.

The AFP executed a search warrant at a Brisbane centre on 20 August 2022, seized electronic devices allegedly containing child abuse material, and searched a man’s Gold Coast home.

The man, who is scheduled to appear in Brisbane Magistrates Court on 21 August, had been reported twice in Queensland but investigators found insufficient evidence to act, according to the police.

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