A tip-off from a United States-based cyber safety watchdog about alleged child exploitation led federal police to James Stuart Logue’s front door, a court has heard.
- Tinder reported Canberra man James Logue’s alleged conversations to a US child exploitation watchdog
- Police allege Mr Logue admitted typing the messages and accessing child exploitation material
- Mr Logue claims he did not intend to act on the conversations and that it was just a fantasy
According to documents tendered to the ACT Magistrates Court, the 29-year-old, of Farrer in Canberra’s south, had allegedly used Tinder in a bid to procure a child for sex in Thailand.
“Hello, I pay you 30,000 baht to find me young girl for sex,” Mr Logue allegedly typed.
“The younger the more I pay.”
Mr Logue applied for bail when he appeared in the Magistrates Court today, charged with two counts of planning to have intercourse with a child outside Australia and using a carriage service to access child exploitation material.
Court documents said Tinder reported the conversations about seeking to procure a child for sex to the National Centre for Missing and Exploited Children, which passed it onto the Australian Federal Police.
Police allege Mr Logue had child exploitation material
AFP officers then raided Mr Logue’s home on Wednesday, where they said they seized three phones and passwords for the devices and online accounts.
Police also allegedly found child exploitation during the searches.
According to police, during the search, Mr Logue admitted typing the messages and accessing child exploitation material.
But he denied making child exploitation material and had not acted on procuring a child for sex, claiming it was just a fantasy.
Prosecutor Vivian Wei opposed Mr Logue’s bail application, arguing he could interfere with evidence and may not reappear.
Ms Wei said police were still working through material, some of which was could be saved online, and needed more time.
But the defence said her client had already provided substantial assistance to investigators and had surrendered his passports.
She also argued that he could be bailed on the condition he not access the internet, as he had already handed a number of devices to police.
Magistrate Glenn Theakston froze the bail bid so police had more time to collect evidence.
Mr Logue will remain behind bars until the matter is back in court next week.