Man charged after forcing girl, 12, to take 'selfie'

A 22-YEAR-OLD man has been arrested overnight for allegedly soliciting a child online and forcing her to take indecent images of herself.

Investigations were commenced by the Cary Police Department in North Carolina following a complaint they received regarding a 12-year-old girl that had been contacted via a social networking messaging tool by a number of men and then coerced into taking indecent images of herself.

It is alleged the girl was threatened if she did not comply.

North Carolina law enforcement referred the information to Task Force Argos who identified that one of the men was allegedly Brisbane based.

On Thursday night investigators raided a River Hills address and located a 22-year-old man and seized computer equipment.

He was charged with using the internet to procure a child under 16. He was bailed to appear in the Brisbane Magistrates Court on August 12.

Investigations are continuing.

Detective Inspector Rouse from Task Force Argos said this is very real reminder for parents and children of the dangerous nature of the internet and the risks associated with communicating with people you do not know.

"This incident has caused us great concern, given the nature of the communications with this young child, the fact that she felt compelled to comply, and that it all occurred behind her parent's backs.

"It is extremely important parents take the time this weekend to look at all of the apps their children are using and get to know them and most importantly, who they are talking to.

"Children must learn that talking to someone that they don't know online is extremely dangerous.

"Anyone can say that they are "14-years-old and share the same interests" but how do you know they are who they say they are?

"My advice to children is if something feels wrong, if you get the slightest feeling this person is not who they say they are, tell someone. 

"It's that simple.  Do not take photographs of yourself and share them under any circumstance or you risk getting into a situation where you are forced and threatened into doing something because they tell you to." he said.

In 2013 Task Force Argos developed the "SELFies, keep it to yourself" campaign with helpful information for parents and children.

For more information on this and the redeveloped "Who's chatting to your kids" book visit the police website at www.police.qld.gov.au


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