Larkins jailed for child porn and fraud

PAEDOPHILE and former chief executive of Hunter Aboriginal Children’s Services Steven Larkins was finally jailed yesterday for fraud and child pornography offences.

Larkins, who appealed a local court magistrate’s 22-month sentence last year, was ordered to serve that time with a non-parole period of 15 months for helping create a market for child abuse material, Newcastle District Court heard.

Larkins was the CEO of the children’s service for several years before an employee found child pornography on a USB stick belonging to Larkins, the court heard.

Detectives then discovered more child pornography on other devices before delving deeper in Larkins’s background.

He was a 25-year-old Scout leader when he got in bed with an 11-year-old boy and indecently assaulted him in 1992 before committing a similar act on a 12-year-old boy five years later, Newcastle Local Court previously heard.

He pleaded guilty last year to committing indecent acts against the boys and received good behaviour bonds.

The Scout movement restricted Larkins’s access to children at the time while police investigated one of the incidents. He was not charged at the time.

Larkins feared, however, that the incidents would be uncovered by a background check, which is why he forged documents in 2004 to say that he was safe to work with children, Judge Berman said.

Larkins was previously jailed for a minimum of 19 months, but he appealed that sentence immediately and did not spend any time in custody.

His sentence began yesterday, meaning that he will be eligible for parole in April 2014.

Larkins’s barrister, John Booth, said Larkins was seeing a sexologist and a psychologist to deal with his paedophilic tendencies.

Judge Berman said: ‘‘[Larkins] must have known that each of those children was harmed in the production of that material.’’

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