More than 6 months’ jail for man who made 816 obscene videos for sale
He owned a Twitter account containing sexually explicit material and made 816 obscene videos for sale.
Muhammad Khairy Ariffin was later caught with 203 sexually explicit videos of children which were made by others.
He had not intentionally sought out these child abuse videos. Instead, they had been automatically downloaded from chat groups on messaging platform Telegram.
Khairy, 30, was sentenced to six months and six weeks’ jail on Friday. He had pleaded guilty to being in possession of child pornography, among other offences.
Around 2018, he began using dating app Grindr, which is commonly used by gay men.
He got consent from fellow app users to film their sexual activities and post the videos on his Twitter account.
The filming was usually done in the staircase areas of Housing Board blocks near his home.
Deputy Public Prosecutor Yvonne Poon said: “The accused branded his videos with the identifier that they had been taken at HDB staircases and used that as a primary marketing point.
“His social media following grew to around 30,000 followers, and he also started a Telegram group chat so that his followers could communicate with him directly.”
Initially, he posted his obscene videos for free, but his followers later asked him to put the clips up for sale. They also said they were willing to pay for hotel rooms for sexual activities.
DPP Poon told the court: “The accused... began to post ‘advertisements’ for users interested in being filmed to communicate with him via Twitter, Telegram or Grindr. He would then film these individuals in HDB block stairwells and various hotel rooms.
“He began posting such videos for sale from around August 2019. Videos would be grouped in (different categories)... with differing prices according to their content.”
After receiving payment, Khairy would send the videos to the buyers through Telegram.
His offences came to light after a 37-year-old manager chanced upon Khairy’s Twitter account and saw that one of the tweets contained a link to a Telegram group chat.
The older man joined the group and realised that the owner of the chat was selling pornographic videos.
The manager then came across messages from some members stating that they were engaging in sexual activities with minors below 16 years old.
He left the chat group and alerted the police on Jan 7, 2020.
Police raided Khairy’s home about three months later and seized his belongings, including an iPhone, that they later found contained 203 sexually explicit videos of children.
The DPP said: “The accused knew that these videos had been downloaded, but did not delete them as he would continue receiving new videos from the (Telegram) chat groups anyway.
“He did not leave the groups as he saw (them) as an avenue to get more followers on his Twitter account... giving him a larger customer base to sell the obscene videos he filmed and produced.”
Officers also found the 816 obscene videos which Khairy had made.
At the time of his arrest, he had about 34,000 followers on Twitter and some 1,600 members in his Telegram group chat.
His bail was set at $15,000 on Friday and he is expected to surrender himself at the State Courts on May 2 to begin serving his sentence.
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