A South Australian man who has admitted to sexually abusing children in Cambodia over three years has lost his bid to keep his identity a secret.
- Geoffrey Moyle’s online profile stated that he worked in Cambodia for a decade
- He pleaded guilty to 11 charges, including nine committed in Cambodia
- He said if his identity was revealed it would lead to “undue hardship” on his children
Geoffrey William Moyle, 46, last week pleaded guilty to 11 charges, including nine offences which were committed in Cambodia, and a further two committed in Adelaide.
In his online profile, Moyle stated he worked in Cambodia for a decade as the South-East Asia director of an international engineering consultancy company.
It stated he was “retained” by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) as a “specialist” under its Aid Advisory Panel.
The profile has since been deleted.
The charges included unlawful sexual intercourse with a child, commit indecent act on a child and possessing child exploitation material.
The sexual offences were committed in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, between 2002 and 2005, while the child exploitation offences were committed in Westbourne Park, Adelaide, in 2019.
Following his guilty pleas, the father of two sought to stop a suppression order on his identity being lifted.
He argued media reports of his identity would lead to “undue hardship” for his two young children, who were not the subject of any charges.
His lawyer provided the Adelaide Magistrates Court with two letters — one from a school psychologist and another from the children’s grandparents — which explained the impact the publication of Moyle’s crimes would have on them.
“The children are of a very tender age,” he said.
He said they were already dealing with the “sudden absence of their father”, who has been in custody since his arrest.
But Commonwealth prosecutor John Clover opposed the application, saying there was “no proper basis” for the suppression order to remain in place.
‘Compelling reason’ for Moyle to be identified
He said Moyle had not successfully proved that there were “special circumstances” to allow the suppression order to stand.
“It’s a particularly high bar, especially when guilt has been conceded,” he said.
Mr Clover told the court it was an “extraordinary proposition” that Moyle should be shielded from the public when he had admitted his crimes.
He said, in fact, there was a “compelling reason” for Moyle to be identified; because he would have come into contact with children in the community and their parents had a right to know of his crimes.
“There is a significant public interest in the parents of those children being made fully aware of the defendant’s identity,” he said.
The suppression order was also opposed by the media, which stated Moyle had not met the test of “special circumstances” to be afforded anonymity during the sentencing process.
Magistrate Greg Fisher agreed and lifted the suppression order.
Moyle will be arraigned in the District Court in March before being sentenced at a later date.
Moyle ‘has never been employed by DFAT’
In a statement provided to the ABC, DFAT distanced itself from Moyle, saying he has “never been employed by DFAT”.
“The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade has a zero tolerance approach to child exploitation and abuse,” a DFAT spokesperson said.
“He worked for managing contractors that received funding from AusAID/Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.”
The spokesperson also said DFAT was not associated with Moyle at the time of his offending.
“Our review of DFAT records indicates that, during the period of alleged offending 2002-2005, he did not work on AusAID/DFAT-funded projects in Cambodia,” the spokesperson said.
“It would be inappropriate to comment further on a matter that is currently before the courts.”