A 49-year-old woman accused of having sex with a minor will be forced to have her pelvic region photographed, after a magistrate ruled the images could help prove or disprove sexual assault charges against her.
Katrina Arredondo was a youth officer at the Melbourne Juvenile Justice Centre in Parkville in the 1990s, when she allegedly had sex with a boy detained at the centre, and after his release, between 1994 and 1995.
The boy was 15 at the time of the first alleged offence. She was 27.
Detective senior constable Sarah Kendall told Melbourne Magistrate's Court on Friday the boy told a Department of Human Services worker about the alleged abuse in 1996.
When he was interviewed, the boy told a department worker that he remembered Ms Arredondo having a small scar on her lower abdomen, just above her pubic area.
He thought the scar was from an appendix operation, however he added, "I'm not sure; I'm probably wrong."
The case was not pursued, but in January this year the man - now in his 30s - made another statement to police. This time, he said he had "just remembered" that Ms Arredondo also had a mark or perhaps a birthmark on one of her breasts. He was not sure which one.
She has since been charged with the sexual penetration of a minor, and with engaging in oral sex with a minor.
Police made an application to the magistrates court to have Ms Arredondo's breasts and lower abdomen photographed, to see whether she did in fact have identifying marks that corresponded with the recollections of the then-teenager.
Ms Arredondo, of Brunswick, had previously refused police requests to photograph her body, the court was told, although she had showed Detective Kendall her scar.
Her lawyer, Jacqueline Kennedy, told the court that Ms Arredondo had never had an appendix operation, and her small scar was from a laparoscopy - a procedure she had undergone as part of her IVF treatment five years after the sexual offences were alleged to have taken place.
Ms Kennedy said her client had medical records to back this up.
"Obviously this procedure which has been requested is invasive," she said.
Magistrate Johanna Metcalf granted permission for a forensic medical officer to photograph Ms Arredondo's lower abdomen and use the photograph for their investigation.
She refused a police request to photograph Ms Arredondo's breasts, saying the man's descriptions of a mark or birthmark were too vague to warrant submitting Ms Arredondo to being photographed.
"Any woman could have some sort of mark in that area, and it's a very imprecise description," she said. "I'm not persuaded in relation to the request."
However, she said the description made by the man in 1996 of Ms Arredondo's scar was more "cogent", and said photographing the lower abdomen would be "less invasive" than photographing her breasts.
She ordered Ms Arredondo submit to being photographed within 14 days, and warned that "reasonable force" could be used to obtain the photograph.
Sydney dancing teacher Grant Davies has been sentenced to 24 years in jail for multiple child sex offences against nine victims, with the judge imposing a non-parole period of 18 years.
Davies pleaded guilty last year to child pornography and sexual abuse charges for crimes against former students from his now-defunct RG Dance studio in Sydney's inner west.
On Friday, he looked directly at the judge as graphic details of his sexual abuse were read out.
Davies began sexually abusing one student when she was just 10 years old, with the abuse continuing for a number of years.
In sentencing Davies to a minimum of 18 years in jail, Judge Jennie Girdham said his crimes were made worse by the fact he was in a position of authority.
She described his behaviour as predatory and persistent.
'Diverse acts' perpetrated on boys and girls
Judge Girdham told the court that Davies' offending covered "diverse acts with nine children" of both genders.
"The vast selection of sexual text messages, pornographic pictures and video material reveal the intensity and the extended duration of the offender's activity with his victims," she said.
"The offender started by sophisticated grooming of children, which over time escalated to sexual activity."
The court heard that some of Davies' victims avoided his advances and were reprimanded by him when they did.
The judge said of a victim: "She is frustrated that when she first had the courage to speak out about it, nearly no-one listened apart from her family and close friends, and many friends and parents in the dance world chose to turn a blind eye and not support her.
Davies groomed students and their mothers
Former students from RG Dance gave victim impact statements during the sentencing hearing, with one student — now aged in her 20s — saying Davies was so trusted by her family he would come to dinner, even though he was regularly abusing her.
A student's mother said she sent Davies naked pictures and videos of her daughters, and that he threatened her when she tried to stop.
The woman told the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Abuse that she feared he would destroy their dancing prospects.
The woman said when she did not respond to Davies, he "threatened to destroy me and my daughters ... expose me and what I was doing ... and release the images of me and my daughters on the internet".
Judge Girdham referenced his grooming pattern in her sentencing. "As the facts made clear, the offender utilized a pattern of conduct and groomed the children for sexual exploitation," said the judge.
"He constantly found new victims.
'Grant felt he was untouchable'
Dance teacher Dodie Wilson said she believed the sentence should have been longer.
"We're happy that it's not the 10 years or so that we were worried that it was going to be, but when you add up all the charges that he should have got, it should have been a lot more," she said.
"Certainly 24 years is still a long time. I'm sure it's nothing for the victims or their families, but for a lot of the other people involved it's better than what we predicted."
"It's nice to know now that we aren't liars. Nobody was lying. He was lying."
"The reason he's (Davies) not offending now is because he's in jail. Full stop. He's remorseful that he got caught."
She made a tearful apology at a hearing for the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, saying she should have done more to prevent her brother from molesting children.
Davies was arrested in May 2013 when his wife reported him to the police after finding inappropriate messages he had sent to an underage girl.
Judge Girdham said she had taken into account Davies' "late and negotiated pleas of guilty, and the discount to which you are entitled by reason of them" to decide the length of the sentence and non-parole period.
POLICE have praised a boy whose testimony led to a Coffs Coast man being found guilty of bestiality and multiple child sex offences.
Allan Kenneth Brookes pleaded guilty to having sex with a cow at a Coffs region dairy farm after charges were brought against him in 2014.
A jury this month found him guilty of 17 other charges including multiple counts of aggravated indecency against a victim aged younger than 16, aggravated sexual assault and aggravated indecent assault.
Coffs Harbour Child Abuse Squad Detective Sergeant Matthew Zimmer said Brookes might not have been brought to justice if not for his young victim's bravery.
"I praise the courage of the young boy to come forward and speak to police," he said.
"If you have ever been abused, no matter what the circumstances and no matter how long ago it occurred, please contact the police.
"If an adult entrusted with your care took advantage of you, they deserve to be arrested, charged and put before the court. We would encourage any person who has ever been a victim of sexual or indecent assault to come forward."
Det Sgt Zimmer said the Child Abuse Squad was victims' first port of call if they wanted to make a report.
"The Child Abuse Squad have a dedicated team of investigators who will actively pursue offenders who have committed such crimes against children," he said.
"The child abuse squad is comprised of detectives who are specially trained to investigate crimes against children, including sexual assault, physical and emotional abuse and serious cases of neglect.
"The squad works in partnership with the Department of Family and Community Services and NSW Health with tri-agency teams based at metropolitan and regional locations throughout NSW.
"All reports are investigated thoroughly and victims can also access counselling and support."
He said anyone with information could call Crime Stoppers on 1800333000 or the Child Protection Helpline on 132111.