25 Jul 2014

Cellphone evidence leads to conviction

5:16 pm on 25 July 2014

Evidence gathered solely from a cellphone has been used for the first time to convict a man for possessing child sexual abuse pictures.

Hastings orchard worker, Michael Lawrence Worsnop, 29, pleaded guilty to three charges of possessing and one of copying an objectionable publication.

He appeared in the Napier District Court on Friday and was sentenced to 17 months in prison.

Internal Affairs was tipped off by a website's administrator that Worsnop had advertised for young girls for sexual contact two years ago.

The ad contained two images of underage girls in sexualised poses.

Internal Affairs said Worsnop's erratic employment and changes of accommodation made him difficult to contact but inspectors eventually found him living in a caravan in an orchard near Napier.

It said Worsnop's phone contained 154 pictures of underage children, some of them in explicit sexual acts and poses.