14 August 2023

Woman admits sexually abusing teen staff, but will fight other charges at trial

| Albert McKnight
Coat of Arms on court building

A 29-year-old woman has pleaded guilty to several child sex offences. Photo: Michelle Kroll.

CONTENT WARNING: This article refers to child abuse.

A woman has admitted sexually abusing two teenage employees at her Gungahlin business, but still denies some alleged offences against one of them as well as all the allegations relating to a third complainant.

On Friday (11 August), the 29-year-old was committed to the ACT Supreme Court for sentencing on the offences she pleaded guilty to as well as for trial on the charges she is fighting.

She admitted committing offences against two complainants who worked for her while they were aged between 15 and 16, however she still denies some allegations against one of these teenagers and will face a trial over those matters.

The woman has also pleaded not guilty over other allegations involving a third person, who was an adult when working for her, and will also face a trial for these charges.

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In the ACT Magistrates Court on Friday, she pleaded guilty to three counts of committing an act of indecency on a 15-year-old in 2019.

She had already pleaded guilty to one count of engaging in a sexual relationship with a young person under special care between 2021 and 2022 over the other teenager.

She has pleaded not guilty to several charges for which she will now face trial, which includes maintaining a sexual relationship with a young person under special care, grooming, committing an act of indecency on a young person and using a carriage service for child abuse material.

All of the other charges that had been laid against her were withdrawn.

Magistrate Glenn Theakston committed her to the Supreme Court for either sentence or trial depending on the charge and adjourned for her first mention in the higher court to be later in August.

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Original court documents for the matter allege the grandmother of one of the teenagers had found sexual photos of the girl and the offender in the girl’s bedroom in late 2021.

Police learned of the abuse faced by this girl in 2022 when she was 17.

The woman was charged last year and pleaded guilty to one offence before coming before the court again on Friday. She is on bail.

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