An Auckland man has been jailed for 20 months for importing and possessing images and movies depicting child sexual abuse.
Michael Ransfield, 58, pleaded guilty to 10 charges of importing objectionable publications and 30 charges of possessing objectionable publication.
He had imported and possessed 14,000 images and 700 movies.
During sentencing, Judge Johns emphasised that this type of offending involves real victims, some of who have suffered horrific sexual abuse.
She said this exploitation is then perpetuated as the images and videos of the children's abuse are spread via the internet.
Customs Acting Group Manager Investigations and Response, Chris Howley, is pleased with the sentencing result.
"The online and border movement of child sexual abuse material is a grim reality. Customs places high priority on this type of offending and we vigorously investigate and prosecute individuals involved in importing, exporting, possessing, and trading child objectionable material," Howley said.
"Each image or video depicting child sexual exploitation is actually a crime scene, and Customs works actively with various local and international agencies to identify these child victims."
"The Ransfield case is a good example of the local and international relationships Customs has with other agencies also committed to combating the online trading of child sexual abuse material."
In 2011, Customs received information that a US-hosted website, which appeared to offer online access to images depicting child sexual abuse, had been accessed by a New Zealander.
Further investigations by Customs identified Ransfield, leading to a search warrant of his residence where he was questioned and arrested.
Forensic examination of his electronic devices revealed 14,000 images and 700 movie files that had been downloaded over a period of four years, with the last download occurring only hours before Customs executed the search warrant.
The child victims were aged between one and 14 years old and the images included depiction of extreme abuse.