Sydney, Jan. 23 (ANI): An Indian national has been arrested for sending lewd pictures to teenage girls to groom them for sex in Australia.
Tegveer Sandhu, 24, sent images of himself masturbating and of his genitals to an undercover police officer he believed was a 13-year-old girl in March last year.
Commonwealth prosecutor Linda Skoblar said the Clayton man entered into a private conversation with the "girl" through a chat room and asked whether she had a boyfriend, was a virgin and had a webcam, before sending naked photos.
He encouraged her to masturbate, referred her to a pornography website and then gave her his phone number and talked about meeting her, the Herald Sun reports.
Analysis of his laptop by police revealed that Sandhu had sent another picture of his genitals to a chat-room user, who had identified herself as a 15-year-old girl from Kensington.
According to the report, the County Court heard that the girl, who has not been located, told him she would have preferred to have seen his face and that he was a "pedo" she was going to report.
Defence barrister David Gibson said his client, who came to Australia in 2009 on a student visa, had been drinking heavily after a relationship breakdown and the death of his grandmother at the time of the offences.
Sandhu, a Sikh, pleaded guilty to using a carriage service both to groom and to transmit indecent communication to a person below 16 years of age.
The maximum penalties for the offences are 12 years and seven years imprisonment respectively.
Judge Mark Dean said the offending was serious and that the prosecutor's suggested minimum jail term of between three and six months' imprisonment was insufficient.
Judge Dean noted that prison could be more burdensome for foreign nationals and that Sandhu would serve his time in not only "lonely circumstances", but probably in protective custody, away from the general prison population, the report added. (ANI)