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Criminal Law News VIC

Posting nude photos on facebook is publishing an indecent article

A man was charged with publishing an indecent article which carries a penalty of twelve months’ imprisonment and a fine of $11,000.

The accused and the complainant had known each other since 2008. They had an intimate relationship that culminated in the complainant living in with the accused.

Three years thereafter, in 2011, the complainant broke up with the accused and moved out of his apartment. To get back at the complainant, the accused uploaded and published nude photos of the complainant on Facebook which showed her breasts and genitalia.

The accused then sent the complainant an email telling her that nude photos of her were uploaded on his Facebook account. The complainant saw her pictures and confronted the accused, asking him to remove the photos of her but he refused so she went to the police.

The police spoke with the accused and he showed the police his Facebook account to substantiate his claim that he had removed the pictures already. Later, the complainant came back to the police to report that her nude photos had been reposted.

The man was charged with publishing an indecent article which carries a penalty of twelve months’ imprisonment and a fine of $11,000. His plea of guilt reduced his sentence to six months’ imprisonment to be served in Home Detention.

The Court noted that the accused is only 20 years old and that he has a degree in accountancy and is currently employed. He has not had any prior convictions which show that he had good moral character. However, the heavy penalty for the crime of publishing an indecent article indicates how serious the offense is.

The actions of the accused shows premeditation: he uploaded six photographs of the complainant, sent her an email inviting her to look at his Facebook page and later removed the photos; but then he later uploaded the same photos and even sent a friend invitation to a friend he and the complainant had in common. Clearly, the complainant’s reputation was damaged.

The plea of guilty by the accused merited a reduction of his penalty but his conviction was recorded to serve as a deterrent to others. His sentence was not suspended however, because of his youth the Court decided that his penalty should be served in Home Detention.

If you or a loved one is charged with publishing an indecent article, it will be wise for you to contact and to obtain the legal services of a competent and experienced criminal lawyer who can represent you, apprise you of your rights and help you prepare a legal defence.

Reference:
Police v Ravshan USMANOV [2011] NSWLC 40. New South Wales Case Law [online]. Available from: [Accessed 12 April 2013]

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