Australia’s Tasmania Makes First Ever Conviction for AI-Generated Child Abuse Material


A Tasmanian man reportedly becomes the first offender in his state for artificial intelligence-generated child abuse material. The 48-year-old man was convicted after possessing, uploading, and downloading hundreds of prohibited AI-generated content.

After being detained and charged, the Gravelly Beach man entered a guilty plea on March 26, 2024, for having access to and possession of child abuse materials.

According to the Australian Federal Police, this is reportedly the first conviction in Tasmanian history involving AI-generated material intended for child exploitation, as part of a Tasmania Joint Anti Child Exploitation Team (TAS-JACET) investigation. 

(Photo: JUAN MABROMATA/AFP via Getty Images) Argentine art designer Santiago Barros works with an AI program at his home in Buenos Aires on July 21, 2023, using file portraits from the Abuelas de Plaza de Mayo photo bank of couples who disappeared during the dictatorship (1976-1983) to recreate what the still missing grandchildren might look like today and then share them on Instagram.

The inquiry was noteworthy, according to AFP Detective Sergeant Aaron Hardcastle, because it was the first time authorities had found and taken evidence of child abuse produced by artificial intelligence in Tasmania.

The content is reportedly “repulsive,” regardless of whether it is an AI-generated image or one showing a real child victim.

The Tasmania JACET Team, the AFP, and its law enforcement partners will keep track of who distributes this disgusting content, find it, and bring it before the courts.

The Australian Centre to Counter Child Exploitation is urging members of the public with information about individuals engaging in child abuse to get in touch with them.

Read Also: Georgia Could Soon Ban Political AI Deepfakes 

US Cases on Prohibited AI Content

In a related incident, a third-grade teacher was detained last month after being found in possession of child porn and artificial intelligence-generated child porn that was made using images from three pupils’ yearbooks.

According to the Pasco County Sheriff’s Office, Steven Houser, a 67-year-old teacher at Beacon Christian Academy in New Port Richey who teaches science to third graders, is the accused.

According to the sheriff’s office, none of the media highlighted his pupils. When deputies arrived, Houser confessed to utilizing three yearbook photos from students to produce child pornography using artificial intelligence.

While Australia’s Tasmania state proves decisive regarding certain AI-generated images, certain US states remain debatable regarding minors.

Middle school pupils at Beverly Hills Schools created and shared nude pictures with other students’ faces last February using AI. 

US Legality of AI Deepfakes

The investigation has raised concerns over the legal loopholes that forbid pornographic material produced by artificial intelligence.

According to reports, posting an unconsented photo of a classmate in the nude may put an eighth-grader in California in legal hot water.

However, it is unclear if state laws would apply if the photo were a deepfake created by artificial intelligence.

This prompted demands that Congress prioritize children’s safety in the US. AI on social media, in particular, has the potential to be very beneficial, but if allowed to run amok, it may also be fatal.

An AI-generated nude does not reflect a real person, claims Santa Ana criminal defense attorney Joseph Abrams. He made it clear that it was child erotica rather than child porn.

Moreover, he added, speaking as a defense attorney, it does not contravene this particular provision or any others.

Related Article: AI-Generated Child Sexual Abuse Images Are Rampant, Could Flood the Internet, UK Watchdog Warns

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