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Former real estate agent grooms 'teen' in online cop trap

A FORMER real estate who groomed a teenage girl online and sent her pictures of his genitals avoided jail time after being caught in an undercover police operation.

Jacob Andrew Woodcock, 30, engaged in conversation of a "sexual nature" with an undercover cop posing as a 13-year-old girl for 27 days, including asking sexual questions, suggesting sexual favours and sending them photos of his penis.

Police searched his home two days after the final explicit photo was sent in March 2017, and Woodcock admitted to his actions.

Woodcock pleaded guilty to grooming a child under 16 at Maroochydore District Court on Monday.

Crown prosecutor Amy McGee said police found messages from November to March but there was no evidence he was trying to "meet-up" with the fictional girl.

Defence barrister, Kevin Kelso said the lack of arrangements meant he had "no intent" to further offend beyond his "low-level nature" type talk.

Mr Kelso said Woodcock was ashamed and didn't have "paedophilic tendencies".

"He has lost a great deal of social contacts... he's significantly embarrassed," he said.

Family of the former real estate agent and poultry farmer supported him in court as Judge Long highlighted the serious nature of his crime.

While Woodcock admitted his guilt, Judge Long noted the offending only stopped when police stepped in.

Judge Long said the Beerwah man needed to become sober after admitting to alcohol issues and regularly attending Alcoholics Anonymous meetings.

Woodcock was sentenced to 18 months jail, wholly suspended for three years.

A conviction was recorded.



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