Former scout leader 'abused position' in child sex offending
A FORMER Ipswich scout leader who preyed on a young boy for his own sexual gratification "abused his position and reflected badly on the scout movement".
Brock Emil Dittman was leader at an Ipswich scouts group when he befriended a young boy over a five year period beginning in 2010.
Dittman and the boy would play video games and the boy stayed at his house.
The boy's mother had "no reason to think it was anything other than a friendship or that anything untoward would happen".
Dittman, 32, became "a trusted member" of the boy's family and had frequent contact with the child.
In sentencing in Ipswich District Court on Friday, Crown prosecutor Michael Spencer said Dittman touched the boy on multiple occasions, kissed him and took pictures up his shorts.
Mr Spencer said the Crime and Corruption Commission and Queensland Police searched Dittman's home in April 2015 and found images on his computer, 40 of which were of the child.
Dittman pleaded guilty to one count each of maintaining sexual relationship with a child and making child exploitation material.
Defence lawyer Timothy Ryan said his client was "thoroughly ashamed of his behaviour".
"He found himself in a socially isolated position and he acknowledges he had distorted thinking at the time," Mr Ryan said.
"He had a level of immaturity and perhaps loneliness as well."
Judge Koppenol said the charge of maintaining a sexual relationship with a child had a maximum penalty of life imprisonment.
"That is a strong statement from parliament that offences of this nature are quite properly regarded as serious," Judge Koppenol said.
"Our society has an expectation people in positions of leadership would not abuse that trust but you did.
"You breeched that trust and abused your position as a scout leader.
"Your actions reflect badly on the scouting movement."
Dittman was sentenced to a head sentence of three years imprisonment, suspended after 12 months for three years and two years probation.