View Comments
Are we sure our children are safe: judge
File picture

A Perth judge has questioned if there is anywhere parents can be sure their children are safe after a WA man was jailed for producing 1000 child exploitation images of local children at school, surf clubs and the beach.

"So where are the children safe today?," District Court Judge Simon Stone said today as he handed 53-year-old former teacher Garry Anthony Tysoe two years jail for producing the child exploitation material this year in Perth and then distributing it on a Russian website.

Tysoe, who had already ended his teaching career and was working in mining sector training when he committed his crimes, had pleaded guilty to using a zoom lens to take photos of female children focusing on their underwear and genital area.

A police media release at the time of Tysoe's arrest alleged the victims were estimated to be aged eight to 13.

Judge Stone today said it was disturbing that many of the Perth children were clearly identifiable, in their school or surfing uniforms, wearing badges and with their faces clearly visible. Their parents had sometimes been nearby and were even present in some shots.

"These were vulnerable children," the judge said. "They were going about their normal child activities - sometimes supervised by parents, sometimes by other adults... sometimes simply playing in a playground."

Such offending was becoming more prevalent and resulted in "incalculable" harm to the victims, he said.

The images would now remain on a child porn website indefinitely as a result of Tysoe's crimes, Judge Stone said, highlighting the stress for those children and parents if they were to become aware of the images, especially in an era where internet bullying was already occurring.

A prosecutor responded to the judge's query about where children could now be deemed safe by suggesting it was a real question for parents taking their sons and daughters to school, surf clubs and public places like the beach.

"They would be horrified to think their children are being photographed by people such as Mr Tysoe," the prosecutor said.

The court heard Tysoe had posted a comment on the website next to one of his images commenting on his happiness with mothers who dressed their children in bikinis that were too large for them.

Judge Stone said while the images were in the least offensive category of child exploitation images, the gravity lay in the fact that Tysoe had created and distributed the material internationally.

The judge said while it was common to find people in Perth courts on possession of child pornography it was less common for the manufacturers and those near the top of the hierarchy to surface in WA courts.

Judge Stone took into account Tysoe's genuine remorse, plea of guilty, clean record and efforts to determine why he had offended the way he did.

The court was told he denied a pedophiliac interest in children, instead claiming to have a fetish regarding underwear.

Tysoe was supported by his wife and three adult children, the court was told.