Sex offender sent back to jail after paedophile helped him access internet

A high-risk sex offender has been jailed for accessing the internet with the help of another paedophile.

Stephen Brett Scully, 61, has been subject to an extended supervision order (ESO) since July 2018, after he was released from Rolleston Prison following 43 months behind bars for child pornography offences.

The order — which allows Corrections to keep a close watch on high-risk sex and violent offenders — will lapse in mid-2023.

Scully came before the Dunedin District Court yesterday for breaching the ESO for the second time.

The first came in June 2019 after he accessed the internet — something he was barred from doing without the supervision of an informed adult.

He was sentenced to 12 months’ intensive supervision.

Less than a year later, Scully breached the order in an almost identical manner.

Probation discovered the defendant had accessed his email account five times in less than four months, assisted by another paedophile.

Scully argued he was simply checking for employment and accommodation opportunities and was “stressed out” at the time, the court heard.

The reason he was under such close scrutiny was because of his criminal history.

In July 2004, he was locked up for seven years over a range of depraved acts.

Scully sexually abused a boy for more than three years, filmed the acts, stored the files on his computer and distributed them to other paedophiles.

Then, during the first half of 2013, he uploaded 100 lewd images to a file-sharing site online and sent 30 objectionable photos, depicting bestiality and children being abused by adults, to another user.

Defence counsel Rhona Daysh told the court yesterday Scully had been forced to move house six times in a year and was desperate to find stable accommodation.

He had since settled at a permanent address and had voluntarily sought counselling.

“It may all turn to custard and be extremely destructive if sent back to prison,” Daysh said.

Probation, however, disagreed.

Scully was described as “nonchalant” when interviewed and showed little ability or motivation to abide by the ESO in times of stress, a report said.

It was concerned his friends were all fellow sex offenders — a fact Daysh said was inevitable since he was placed in a housing complex surrounded by them — and that home detention could heighten his risk factors.

Probation believed Scully’s low mood would worsen and, restricted to his home, he would lean more on “like-minded people”.

Judge Josephine Bouchier said it was a question of risk.

“I must err on the side of caution and not expose the community to any further risk from this defendant,” she said.

Scully was jailed for three months.

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