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First of its kind: Australian man charged for “revenge porn”

This is the first person to be charged with such an offense in the country.
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A man has been charged under Western ’s new revenge porn laws for sharing images of his ex-girlfriend on a fake profile.

The man, a 24-year-old Spearwood resident, is alleged to have taken photos of his ex-girlfriend with her consent during their relationship. When the relationship ended, he then created a fake Instagram profile under the name of his ex and shared her intimate photographs. He is now facing a sentence that could turn him into the first person punished according to the new revenge porn laws.

According to this Monday’s statement by the Western Australia police, “it will be alleged when the relationship broke down, the man created a false Instagram page in the victim’s name and posted seven intimate images of her without her consent,”

“It will be further alleged when the Instagram page was removed, four other Instagram pages were created in the victim’s name and a total of 10 intimate images were posted.”

The man is due to appear in front of the Family Violence Court of Fremantle on the 20th of May. He is charged with distributing intimate images of another person without consent, under the 2018’s Criminal Law Amendment Act (Intimate Images), enforced since mid-April.

The new legislation states that it is illegal to share, distribute or threaten to distribute intimate images without consent from the subject, whilst enabling the courts to issue take-down orders.

It affects videos and images containing full or partial nudity, sexual and private acts, and it punishes digital manipulations such as applying someone’s face on a different body. If proved guilty the bad actors face charges of up to 18 months of jail.

Western Australia’s state laws are summing up onto the federal laws passed in August last year, which allow for fines up to over $100,000 dollars for individuals and up to over $500,000 for companies refusing to remove the intimate images when requested by the commissioner.

According to this year’s researches, revenge porn is a common problem in Australia, with one in five people between 16 and 49 being victims of revenge porn; one person out of 20 declaring to have shared intimate images and one in ten declaring to have taken photographs without consent.

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