Briton held for ‘grooming girl’ after sting operation in Australia

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A British tourist has been arrested in Australia for allegedly attempting to meet a girl he thought was 13 after grooming her over the internet.

The 34-year-old had arranged to meet the youngster after several explicit conversations with her, police said.

The New South Wales force said officers from its Sex Crimes Squad’s Child Exploitation Internet Unit (CEIU) began engaging with the man, who was visiting Australia from the UK.

Detectives from the unit’s Strike Force Trawler say the man believed he was speaking to a 13-year-old girl and engaged in sexually-explicit conversations with the child.

A picture of the camper van used by the British tourist arrested in Sydney. Picture: NSW Police Briton held for 'grooming girl' after sting operation in Australia Briton held for ‘grooming girl’ after sting operation in Australia 830a44f98cb274ea7b6b3974fa8a8c1582794580967e782f62b5a7c00053c006 4071699
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The camper van used by the British tourist arrested in Sydney. Picture: NSW Police

He is said to have told the youngster he was driving down the coast from Cairns and made arrangements to meet her when he arrived in Sydney.

He was detained in the Westmead district of Sydney, shortly after 11am on Friday.

Officers searched a camper van, and seized a number of items for forensic examination.

He was taken to Parramatta Police Station, in Westmead, and was charged with using a “carriage service to procure persons under 16”.

On Saturday, John Alexander Kenyon appeared at the Parramatta Bail Court, were he was remanded in custody, 9News reported.

Police stand with the British man after he is arrested in Sydney. Pic: NSW Police Briton held for 'grooming girl' after sting operation in Australia Briton held for ‘grooming girl’ after sting operation in Australia d40bb7ea83122ebbebc1273ec78b3a55768591176979f45cbcc6d67d87a50d12 4071702
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Police stand with the British man after he is arrested in Sydney. Pic: NSW Police

He did not apply for bail and it was formally refused.

The hearing was adjourned to Sydney’s Central Local Court on 16 August.

NSW Police Force said on its website: “Strike Force Trawler is an ongoing investigation by the CEIU into the sexual abuse and exploitation of children facilitated through the internet and related telecommunications devices.

“Regular covert online investigations are conducted by the CEIU and police in NSW work closely with their law-enforcement colleagues interstate and overseas.”



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