in

Catholic Ladies College Teacher Accused of Downloading Child Porn from Dark Web

police arrest night
4.4
(22)

A Melbourne teacher was allegedly caught with explicit images of young girls when he handed in his work laptop to the school’s IT department.

Maths teacher Matthew Saada will go to trial charged with eight offences including knowingly possess child abuse material and accessing child pornography using a carriage service dating between January 2016 and October 2017.

The 33-year-old was working at Catholic Ladies College at Eltham in the city’s north at the time and is fighting the charges at a committal hearing in the Melbourne Magistrates Court.

“Not guilty, your honour,” Mr Saada told magistrate Johanna Metcalf on Monday when asked to enter a plea.

School IT worker Andrew Roberts was quizzed about how he uncovered the images which led to the charges.

He was planning to wipe the laptop for the school to sell to a computer recycling company when he found the images, the court was told.

“You activate the computer, you form suspicions about some of the contents, you examine further and consult with another staff member,” defence lawyer Dr Michael FitzGerald asked the worker.

“Yes that’s correct,” Mr Roberts said.

Mr Roberts spotted a link to dark web browser Tor and then looked at other files on November 10, 2017, the court was told.

He said he was in the “My Documents” folder when he noticed a suspect sub-folder containing images of females.

The technician went straight to a school counsellor, where he then used a program to uncover deleted files which he transferred to a separate hard drive and took it to police.

The defence lawyer probed Mr Roberts about whether the hard drive had ever been used before or if there were any other files on it before they were transferred.

He said the drive had been used before but he wasn’t sure if there were already existing files on it.

Following the discovery Mr Roberts said the math teacher was told it was a “serious matter” and he should and in his other laptop and head home straight away.

The worker also told the court he had tried to get Mr Saanda to bring in the laptop earlier for an antivirus update but he wouldn’t do it until the end of term three in 2017.

Victoria Police digital forensic officer Michael Kolotelo was quizzed about contents uncovered on a separate laptop and hard drive found in Mr Saada’s home.

He explained the two devices contained the “majority” of the child abuse material including up to 18,750 child abuse material files.

The defence lawyer examined the officer about the discrepancies in the amount of files, why dates showed the laptop hadn’t been accessed months before the charges and why file modification dates didn’t match.

Prosecutor Jason Gullaci asked whether it was possible for dates and times for files to be “manipulated”.

“It is possible, there is a possibility it can occur,” Mr Kolotelo said.

The police officer in charge of the case Acting Sergeant Adam Donnelly told the court he examined five devices including laptops over five days.

He said there was child abuse material found on each device but they had to narrow it down.

“It wasn’t feasible to do the reports on all devices so we narrowed it down to the two devices,” Acting Sergeant Donnelly told the court.

The magistrate found there was enough evidence for the case to head to trial in front of a jury.

“Clearly there’s a competing version and issues that need to be determined by a jury,” Ms Metcalf said.

The teacher was originally charged with nine offences but one was withdrawn by prosecutors during the hearing.

Mr Saada will next face a directions hearing at the County Court in March.

How useful was this post?

Click on a star to rate it!

Average rating 4.4 / 5. Vote count: 22

No votes so far! Be the first to rate this post.

What do you think?

39 points
Upvote Downvote

Written by L Walker

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

judge sentenced to prison

Louisville Man Accused of Selling Drugs on the Dark Web is Sentenced to 11 Years in Prison by Federal Court

coincheck hack

Tokyo Police Arrest 31 Individuals in Connection to 2018 Coincheck Heist