News

Man fined $1000 after taking girl, 14, to motel for sex

A TOOWOOMBA man who travelled to Warwick for sex with an underage girl has walked from court with a fine.

The 18-year-old man struck up a friendship with the 14-year-old girl on the dating site Zoosk and the pair then began to text one another.

She initially told him she was 18, but soon changed her story to 15 before confessing her true age of 14.

During his appearance in the Warwick Magistrates Court this week, it was heard the man sent two pictures of his genitals to the girl in May.

Three days later he told the girl he was visiting Warwick for a holiday and they made plans to meet.

Police prosecutor Steve de Lissa said the man picked up the girl from her friend's place and took her to a motel, where they both spent the night.

The court heard they had sex three times that evening.

The girl's parents discovered her at the motel the following morning and phoned police.

Sergeant de Lissa said the girl told officers the sex was consensual and admitted lying about her age initially.

The man admitted knowing the girl was underage when they had sex and said he knew it was wrong and he could "get into trouble".

Defence lawyer Bonnie O'Brien said her client had previously worked as a dairy farmer and abattoir worker but was currently unemployed and living with his parents.

"He is extremely embarrassed and ashamed to be in court for offences of this nature," she said.

"While these are very serious charges, I would suggest imprisonment would be a little out of range."

Magistrate Graham Lee fined the man $1000 and no conviction was recorded.

Topics:  editors picks, underage sex, warwick magistrates court



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