Young man gets blue card back after rape video case

AGREEING to distribute naked photos and a rape video of a young woman in a violent relationship led to a young man losing his right to a blue card.

But he successfully argued to have it restored when the matter was heard before the Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal in Hervey Bay last month.

The man, who cannot be named for legal reasons, was a teenager at the time of offending, the tribunal heard.

The man was charged with possessing property suspected of being tainted when he appeared in court.

He was fined $750 and no conviction was recorded.

At the time, Judge Terry Gardiner told the man he accepted the offending was out of character and was unlikely to be repeated.

The court heard the teen had met an older man while working in a restaurant where the man was a regular customer.

Unbeknown to the teen, the man was involved in serious offending.

The older man became involved with a woman who was in Australia on a working visa.

During the course of the relationship, the man recorded non-consensual intercourse between himself and the woman on his mobile phone.

The teen did not know of the offences or that the images he later received were taken in the course of non-consensual sexual activity, the tribunal heard.

The woman called emergency services on January 29, 2018, about the offences that had been committed against her.

On January 30, 2018, the older man contacted the teenager.

He told him the woman had contacted police after they had an argument.

In a text message, he said to the teenager, "if I get locked up, I want u to revenge for me".

The teen responded "no worries".

The man sent the teenager five photos of the woman sleeping with her breasts and face exposed.

Two photos he sent showed her buttocks.

He also sent a video of the woman and the man having intercourse.

The images were followed by a text from the man, which read: "I got good stuff on her. This will make her embarrassed. So if you don't hear from me. Post it all over the web … All (an overseas country) and all over Australia".

The teen replied "yeah no worried" (sic).

He then made comments about the material that had been sent, but it was accepted the teen did not intend to assist the man with posting the material and shortly after he deleted it from his phone.

In an interview with police, the teen denied intending to distribute the material and had told the man he would in order to placate him.

He said he had deleted the images as soon as he received them because he did not want to get into trouble.

The tribunal heard the young man had met regularly with a psychologist and now had insight into his offending and the impact it would have had on the victim.

The tribunal heard at the time the images were taken, the woman was being held by the man against her will.

"(The) co-offender is a dangerous and terrible criminal and has taken someone's liberty and has caused considerable physical and psychological harm to a vulnerable person," tribunal member John Milburn wrote in his finding.

"Through his therapy and training, learning and reflection, the applicant acknowledges that his actions were irresponsible and careless."

Evidence from the young man's psychologist, Chris Hepperlin, told of how he had developed an understanding of the older man's behaviour and the impact his own offending would have had on the victim.

"I believe the process of psychotherapy has resulted in a genuine shift in his capacity for deeper empathy, an awareness of the impact on/harm to victims, and an understanding of the need to articulate a clearer position on his responsibilities to protect others from harm," a statement from Mr Hepperlin said.

Mr Milburn found the applicant now had the ability to recognise serious situations that might involve vulnerable people and take appropriate action.

He found there was no exceptional case for denying the applicant a blue card.