Disgraced Ben McCormack Spared Prison Time Over Charges
Former Nine Network reporter Ben McCormack has been given a $1000, three-year good behaviour bond after pleading guilty to child pornography offences.
McCormack, 43, was suspended in April from his role as a journalist on A Current Affair after he was charged with two counts of using a carriage service to transmit, publish or promote child pornography.
"Well before he was ever charged he acknowledged the wrongness and inappropriateness of his conduct and he sought professional help," Judge Paul Conlon said at the Downing Centre District Court on Wednesday when sentencing McCormack.
The judge said the facts of the case were different from other child pornography cases he had dealt with because most of the cases involve videos or photos of children.
The sentence was reduced heavily (from 15 years imprisonment) because according to the Judge, McCormack "had not tried to groom young children and that the offences were at the lower end of the range of seriousness."
A doctor's report noted that McCormack had suffered anxiety and social phobia which he managed with alcohol.
According to the ABC,
Judge Conlon said McCormack "had shown remorse, had suffered reputational damage and needed to keep receiving psychiatric treatment".
"He has shown a willingness to accept responsibility," he said. "He will never again be able to work in the media."