News

Recidivist child porn offender returned to jail

A 59-YEAR-OLD man who continued to download and view child exploitation material on his computer just days after being handed a suspended jail sentence for the same offending has been sent back to jail.

Danny James Owens had an "appalling" criminal history that included about 70 convictions for mainly property and fraud offences, Toowoomba District Court heard.

However, among those convictions was the rape of a nine-year-old boy in the mid-1990s for which he was jailed for eight years.

In 2007 he rented a laptop computer but when he returned it a staff member at the hire store found images of child exploitation material while he was cleaning the computer's disks and contacted police, the court heard.

Warwick police found thousands of child exploitation material images on the laptop.

Owens pleaded guilty before Warwick District Court in 2010 to those offences and was sentenced to two years in jail but the term was suspended in full after the sentencing judge took into account he had already spent 225 days in pre-sentence custody.

However, though police had seized the laptop computer when he was arrested, a computer disk containing hundreds of child exploitation material had been missed and just days after he was sentenced Owens had downloaded some of those images onto a laptop computer.

That computer was seized by police and found to contain about a few hundred images of child pornography, the court heard.

Owens had then fallen off the radar and was not found by police until February last year when he was taken into custody.

He had served a full year in custody before appearing before Toowoomba District Court to plead guilty to downloading the child pornography from the computer disk.

He also pleaded guilty to eight counts of failing to report to police as required as a "reportable offender" under the Child Protection Act.

His barrister Robbie Davies told the court his client had endured a very difficult childhood which had included time spent inside the notorious Westbrook Boys Prison when in his teens.

A truck driver by occupation, his client was medicated for depression, Mr Davies said.

Judge Deborah Richards said Owens had spent enough time in pre-sentence custody for the offences arising from the failing to report and the most recent child pornography charges.

However, she said she intended activating in full the suspended sentence he had been subject to when he committed the offences of failing to report to police and possessing child exploitation material.

"You were well aware you needed to comply with the suspended sentence," she said.

For the most recent offences, Judge Richards sentenced Owens to 12 months in jail but declared the 365 days he had spent in pre-sentence custody as time served under that sentence.

Judge Richards activated the remainder of Owens' suspended sentence in full, which was one year and 140 days, but ordered he be eligible to apply for release on parole as from July 4 this year after having served five months of that term.

In sentencing him, Judge Richards noted Owen's lengthy criminal history.

"Whether you get that (parole) or not, given your criminal history Mr Owens, but you can apply," she said.

Topics:  child porn, court, jail, offender, sex offender, toowoomba


Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

Saints valiant til the end in 68-4 loss to Gladiators

BOWING OUT: St George showing great sportsmanship after bowing out 68-4 in A-grade.

Brittany McElligott with the wrap from the St George Saints.

Skateboarding not just for city kids

FLIP IT: The Skateboard Revolutions Workshop team showing their skills.

Fraser and his team bring skateboarding to the regions.

Former Begonia student wins prestigious STEM award

PROUD STUDENT: Zachary Sizer is presented the Peter Doherty Award for Excellence in STEM Education by Minister for Innovation, Science and the Digital Economy and Small Business Leeanne Enoch.

Zachary doing the region proud in STEM education.

Latest deals and offers

All pretty in pink at 2016 Pink Ladies Day

When it comes to fundraisers, these ladies know how to work their magic.

Saints valiant til the end in 68-4 loss to Gladiators

BOWING OUT: St George showing great sportsmanship after bowing out 68-4 in A-grade.

Brittany McElligott with the wrap from the St George Saints.

Skateboarding not just for city kids

FLIP IT: The Skateboard Revolutions Workshop team showing their skills.

Fraser and his team bring skateboarding to the regions.

Former Begonia student wins prestigious STEM award

PROUD STUDENT: Zachary Sizer is presented the Peter Doherty Award for Excellence in STEM Education by Minister for Innovation, Science and the Digital Economy and Small Business Leeanne Enoch.

Zachary doing the region proud in STEM education.

Labor takes a hit on vegetation management legislation

Former Labor Warrego candidate Mark O'Brien is worried about the fall-out of the vegetation management legislation.

Veg management legislation has hurt Labor in the bush

Flood watch issued for Qld, NSW

NSW State Emergency Service warns of heavy rain

Die-hard fan's 34 magic Gympie Muster years

STICK AROUND FOR A BEER: Mal Williams has been at every Gympie Muster for 34 years.

Mal Williams has only missed one Muster in 35 years - the first one

MOVIE REVIEW: Life on the Road

Ricky Gervais, Ben Bailey Smith and Foregone Conclusion (Steve Clarke, Andy Burrows, Stuart Baxter Wilkinson, Michael Clarke) in a scene from David Brent: Life on the Road.

Ricky Gervais has brought David Brent back to life on the big screen

Jessica Alba wants tequila shots served at her funeral

Businesswoman and actor Jessica Alba

There won't be mourning at this funeral

Tom Hiddleston's Instagram account hacked

Actor Tom Hiddleston

Thor star the latest celebrity targetted by hackers

Charlize Theron's son dresses up as Frozen character

Actor Charlize Theron

Star's son spotted dressed a beloved Frozen character

BOOKS: Food for thought in Caroline Beecham's latest novel

Maggie's Kitchen by Caroline Beecham is published by Allen & Unwin, RRP $29.99.

New novel reminds readers that bravery exists in many forms

TELEVISION: New show is a Survivor, for now

Jonathan LaPaglia hosts the TV series Australian Survivor.

WHAT happens when a new show with a big budget flops?

REVEALED: Pat Rafter's $18m Coast house on the market

Check out the photos of the Coast's most expensive property for sale

The "correction we had to have" in Gladstone's rentals

UPWARD MARCH: The rental vacancy rate in Gladstone has improved for the first time in more than a year, providing a confidence boost in the market.

Vacancy rates improve with signs that things are getting betterF

ISLAND FOR SALE: Cheap Fraser Coast island drops price again

Suna Island in the Great Sandy Strait will be auctioned by Ray White Hervey Bay on Saturday morning.

This is the cheapest island you will find for sale in Australia

How a family home can fit on a 250sq m block

This is what you can build on 250m2.

Here's the floor plan of a home built on 250sq m

$100m plan for Curtis Island 'world class' luxury resort

$100 million resort: Top views at Turtle Street at Curtis Island.

"At the moment we think it meets all the town planning approvals.”

Noosa mayor on "red alert" over planning court decision

Mayor Tony Wellington hands down his first budget.

Mayor upset at lack of say about look and feel of Noosa