Michael John Portwood
Michael John Portwood

Gympie man’s mysterious safe hid 715 child porn images

A Gympie region man has been convicted in the Albury Local Court of two counts of possessing child abuse material.

The Herald Sun has reported that Michael John Portwood, 68, pleaded guilty last week to the offences when he appeared via videolink from Gympie, where he now lives.

Firefighters are on the scene of a bushfire burning at Widgee

The HS said court documents revealed Portwood moved in with a Lagington woman he was in a relationship with in August 2015. The relationship ended in October 2015, and the accused moved out, it reported.

Activate your FREE Courier Mail subscription and you could win $20,000

"He left some of his belongings behind, including the brown safe, but when the women tried to contact him, she got no response.

"The woman, who became a witness, kept the safe stored in the garage until 2019 when she decided to move interstate, and needed to sell the safe, which she advertised on the Albury-Wodonga Buy, Sell, Swap Facebook page.

Michael John Portwood
Michael John Portwood

"On November 30, 2019, a man bought the safe and came over with a friend to pick it up and take it home.
"Once at home the man used an angle grinder to open the safe, revealing a number of hard drives, a yellow envelope containing photo ID and bank cards with Portwood's name on them as well as six USBs.

"The man grabbed one of the USBs and put it into the computer and was shocked to see child pornography.

"The man went back to Lavington to see the female witness saying: "We got the safe open, there's child pornography in there, your ex-partner is a sick c---".

"The woman then took the items to police who found child porn on two out of six of the USBs.

"On a black USB they found 245 images, with 30 per cent category one images of children aged between 4-14 engaged in sexual acts. The rest was category two material, which involved children aged 4-14.

"On a blue USB they found 470 images, 40 per cent of which were category one material.

"On Wednesday December 9, Portwood attended the Gympie police station where he was questioned about the safe and the USBs.

"He admitted to owning the safe and the hard drives, but denied ownership of the child pornography.

"Portwood told police the Lavington woman was setting him up.

Mr Funston sentenced Portwood to a two-year community corrections order with supervision, the Herald Sun reported.

Gympie Times

Big Avocado on agenda as Burnett towns score funding boost

Premium Content Big Avocado on agenda as Burnett towns score funding boost

A big avocado may be on the horizon for Blackbutt as Burnett towns receive tens of...

Qld Health yet to confirm Burnett vaccine arrival date

Premium Content Qld Health yet to confirm Burnett vaccine arrival date

With phase one of the vaccination program now underway, the arrival date of the...

United farmers push back on ‘excessive’ reef regulations

Premium Content United farmers push back on ‘excessive’ reef regulations

‘The government should work alongside farmers ... instead of ramming unworkable...