A Windang man accused of downloading and sharing volumes of graphic child abuse material via social media has been released from custody on conditional bail after agreeing to stay off the internet and away from children.
Bevan Karl Croker, who has recently been living opposite a primary school, must comply with a set of strict conditions designed to closely monitor his movements in the community as he awaits his next court appearance in December.
The 50-year-old was arrested on Wednesday after Australian Federal Police raided his home and seized two mobile phones for forensic examination.
Police said they launched an investigation into Croker's alleged activities after receiving a tip from the US-based National Centre for Missing and Exploited Children that an internet user - believed to be based in Australia - had accessed child abuse material using a Google account.
Police will allege Croker, who is a New Zealand national, used the social media apps Facebook, Telegram, Wikr and Whatsapp to download, send and receive hundreds of videos and images of child abuse material.
Croker was charged with two counts of possessing child abuse material obtained or accessed using a carriage service, and three counts of using a carriage service to transmit child abuse material.
He was remanded in custody on Wednesday night and faced Wollongong Local Court on Thursday where he sought release on bail.
Prosecutors initially rejected five different proposed addresses, including a Lake Illawarra home within 500m of four schools, before agreeing that Coker could live at a residence in Keiraville.
His detailed bail incorporates conditions that prohibit him from having access to or using the internet, including not having a mobile phone that is internet enabled, and he is also banned from being in the company of anyone under the age of 16.
Coker must also report to police three times a week and surrender his New Zealand passport.
Coker attempted to shield himself from waiting media on Thursday afternoon, donning a face mask and running from Wollongong courthouse in a bid to avoid scrutiny.
His case will return to court on December 17 for mention.
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