Oudtshoorn resident Dale Mackintosh will start serving a five-year jail sentence today. This after the Oudtshoorn Regional Court found Mackintosh guilty of owning child pornography and sentenced him to seven years imprisonment, two of which were suspended.
During the trial, the Film and Publication Board analysed 200 images found in his possession. Expert testimony confirmed the pictures contained minors and should be classified as Child Sexual Abuse Material (CSAM).
“This sentencing, after many hours of diligent work by our Child Protection Officers in close relationship with our colleagues in law enforcement, is warmly welcomed,” says Film and Publication Board (FPB) Interim Chief Executive Officer Nomvuyiso Batyi.
Mother nabbed for selling naked pics of her four-year-old
The sentencing comes at the same time a Cape Town mother appeared in the Bishop Lavis Magistrate’s Court on charges relating to the manufacturing, distribution, and financial gain of child pornography.
She was nabbed in a joint operation by local police and the FBI for selling naked pictures of her four-year-old on the dark web.
“The FBI picked this up on the internet, and an agent from the homeland security [department] acted as a buyer and traced her to Bonteheuwel via geotagging,” said National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) regional spokesperson Eric Ntabazalila.
The mother, who allegedly received payments via Pay Pal, did not apply for bail. The case has attracted widespread public interest. Community members of Bonteheuwel were outside court monitoring developments. The case was postponed for further investigations and will resume on 15 September.
The dark web
The rise of the internet era has made identifying child pornographic material extremely challenging for the FPB and law enforcement.
“Sexual predators find an anonymous home on the internet, where it is easy to build a persona that is very different from reality used for exploitation,” said Batyi.
“Stranger danger is a mantra that parents and caregivers should be teaching their children in the real as well as the virtual world”.