A serial predator with a history of abusing schoolboys used a sharpie to scrawl a creepy message on a toilet door inside a busy shopping centre.
A serial predator with a history of abusing schoolboys used a sharpie to scrawl a creepy message on a toilet door inside a busy shopping centre.

Child predator’s creepy toilet note seeking ‘any age’ sex

A serial predator with a history of abusing schoolboys used a sharpie to scrawl a creepy message on a toilet door inside a busy shopping centre inviting interested parties of "any age" to meet him for sex.

Queensland Police were alerted to the message written on the door of a men's cubicle at the Capalaba Park Shopping Centre encouraging readers to meet the man at the library across the road, court documents revealed.

"Head today, Friday, the 28th February at library across the road 12:00 - 12:30 any age," the graffiti read.

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Police followed the instructions and found the author, Hendrikus Ruhland, waiting across the road in the library toilets.

During their investigation, officers discovered Ruhland, 74, was a convicted sex offender who was serving a 10-year supervision order in the community over sexual offences he had committed against boys in the 1980s and 90s.

Some of the historic sexual conduct had taken place in public toilets, inquiries revealed.

Ruhland faced Brisbane Magistrates Court in March where he pleaded guilty to a single charge of wilful damage.

His lawyer argued that it could not be concluded from the use of his words "any age" that he was actively seeking to engage with children.

The court was also told that he had not reoffended over the past seven years.

Magistrate Judith Daley sentenced Ruhland to four months' jail and he was released on parole after serving five and a half weeks behind bars.

After his release, Ruhland appealed his sentence in the Brisbane District Court arguing that it had been excessive.

His lawyer said the magistrate had sentenced Ruhland on the basis of his past offences and had failed to declare three days he had spent on remand.

In her judgment, Judge Geraldine Dann said she would allow the appeal - but only to vary the sentence to take into account the three days he had served.

Judge Dann said in her reasons published last week, that the head sentence was in range because of the "potentially significant risk to children".

"Not only was the comment an invitation to participate in sex … its terms suggest that this could have involved children," Judge Dann said in her judgment.

*For 24-hour sexual violence support call the national hotline 1800RESPECT on 1800 737 732 or MensLine on 1800 600 636.

 

Originally published as Child predator's creepy toilet note seeking 'any age' sex


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