Man charged with seeking child for sex, threatening violence
A NORTHERN Rivers man accused of trying to procure a teen for sexual activity has been granted bail.
The 20-year-old faced Tweed Heads Local Court via video link on Wednesday.
He's entered no formal pleas to his two allegations of trying to procure a child for unlawful sexual activity and using a carriage service to threaten harm.
Both allegations relate to May 1 this year, in which he allegedly tried to arrange sex with a 15-year-old girl, but also threatened to strangle and sexually assault her.
The man's solicitor, Cameron Bell, asked Magistrate Geoff Dunlevy to release his client on conditional bail.
Mr Bell told the court this could be under the conditions the man surrender any mobile phones and not have access to the internet.
He said the allegations had arisen in "unusual circumstances" in that the defendant had approached police with a complaint about the alleged victim's boyfriend.
At this time, his client - who the court heard lived with Asperger syndrome - openly allowed police to access his mobile device, the court heard.
But this led to police laying charges against the young man.
"He went into the police station to report an offence against him and had no qualms in terms of the investigators looking at the course of correspondence that's there on his telephone," Mr Bell said.
He told the court the 15-year-old girl on the receiving end of the messages had not, to his knowledge, made a statement to police.
He stressed "if the messages were sent by the defendant", the court would also have to establish his intent.
The court heard the man was already on a good behaviour bond at the time of the alleged incident.
But Mr Bell said he had strong ties to the area and could adhere to bail conditions under family supervision.
Police prosecutor, Sgt Short, opposed bail, saying the alleged offending showed "escalating behaviour" from the man, who had been on a bond for domestic violence offences.
After the defence agreed to further conditions that he not go within 100m of the girl's home or school, Magistrate Dunlevy granted bail.
But before the proceedings ended, the man asked him: "Why are you taking my phone away?"
Mr Dunlevy replied: "So that you don't use it to contact children".
When the defendant asked how long this condition would be in place, the Magistrate told him the conditions would be in place until the court case had ended.
"You have to obey them because it's a court order," he said.