Christchurch man found with more than 1000 child sex abuse publications jailed for four years

Anthony David Cook used a social media account to upload child sex abuse material. Photo / NZME

Warning: this article discusses sexual abuse and may be upsetting for some readers.

Using the handle “Superdad”, a man operated an account to upload sexual content involving children and share with other users his dark desire to “perv on young kids”.

This week, Anthony David Cook, 59, was sentenced in Christchurch District Court to four years and one month in prison for sharing and possessing child sexual exploitation material (CSEM).

According to the summary of facts, in 2015 Cook used fake details and the username Superdad748 to create an account on a social media messenger platform located in the United States.

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In January 2019, he uploaded CSEM involving a boy aged between seven and ten years.

This was detected by the social media platform and while it was reported to the authorities, a suspect could not be linked to the distribution of the image.

Cook continued to upload CSEM, distributing a total of 41 images to seven recipients until services were able to link it to his account.

In October 2021, police searched Cook’s Merivale home and found two iPhones.

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Cook appeared in Christchurch District Court this week.  Photo / George Heard
Cook appeared in Christchurch District Court this week. Photo / George Heard

The phones were searched and a total of 1056 objectionable publications were discovered. Some involved children as young as four years old performing sexual acts on adults.

According to the summary, Cook would message others on the platform and express how he “loved to perv on young kids getting changed”.

“I think the pools will finally get a visit from me this weekend. Can’t stop thinking about the little boy’s c****,” he said in one exchange.

In another message, Cook described seeing a 10-year-old girl at a customer’s home he had visited. He told the recipient he had been thinking of the girl in a sexual way.

“I stared at her when I could and she held my gaze.”

Cook faced two counts of exporting objectionable publications, one of refusing to give his passwords to authorities and representative charges of possession of objectionable publication and distribution of objectionable publication.

At the sentencing, Judge Tom Gilbert said an advice to court report suggested Cook lacked any real insight into the harm his offending had created.

“You and people like you are the market for which this material is created. Without users like you, it is likely that there would be less of this abuse in the world and certainly less filming and distribution of it.”

Judge Gilbert said it was clear that Cook had distorted thinking and an entrenched attraction to children.

The report assessed Cook, who had “decent” jobs over the years and was well-educated, as a medium to high risk of reoffending.

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But it also said he was remorseful for what he had done and was willing to get help.

Judge Gilbert gave Cook an uplift for his previous convictions and discounts for his guilty pleas and background before jailing him for more than four years.

Following the hearing, chief customs officer Simon Peterson acknowledged the sentencing.

Child sexual abuse is taken very seriously, he said in a press release.

“Viewing and sharing child sexual abuse material feeds growing international demand for increasingly disturbing imagery of abhorrent crimes being committed against children,” he said.

“This sort of crime is not limited by international borders – and neither are we.”

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SEXUAL HARM

Where to get help:

If it’s an emergency and you feel that you or someone else is at risk, call 111.

If you’ve ever experienced sexual assault or abuse and need to talk to someone, contact Safe to Talk confidentially, any time 24/7: • Call 0800 044 334 • Text 4334 • Email [email protected] • For more info or to web chat visit safetotalk.nz

Alternatively contact your local police station – click here for a list.

If you have been sexually assaulted, remember it’s not your fault.

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