Local News

Self-confessed "total pedo" Ben McCormack has avoided prison sentence

Judge Conlon took into consideration the former A Current Affair journalist had sought medical treatment prior to his arrest.

By Kate Wagner
Self-confessed “total pedo” Ben McCormack has avoided jail after pleading guilty to two counts of using a carriage service to promote, publish or transmit child pornography in September.
The former A Current Affair reporter was sentenced to a three-year good behaviour bond and fined $1000 after the court heard he was a victim of child sexual abuse and obsessively fantasised about a period in his life when he was a young boy.
McCormack had online conversations with young boys aged between seven and 12-years-old as well as telling another man he would always be a paedophile, the court heard.
"Yep, U ... I'll always have the attraction ... They are beautiful," he said via text.
Despite the offence carrying a maximum prison sentence of 15 years, the judge described McCormack’s offending at the “lowest” end of the scale.
Police did not allege the former Channel Nine journalist exchanged any images or videos of children, only words.
McCormack had also sought medical treatment prior to his arrest – something Judge Paul Conlon said he had never seen.
“This is the first time I have ever seen a case involving this type of charge (where) the offender himself, well before he was arrested .... was seeking professional assistance for what he knew was wrong,” he said.
Judge Conlon added his reputation had been destroyed and the public humiliation had resulted in the former journalist trying to kill himself on two occasions.
The veteran journalist was arrested in April when police officers sensationally raided A Current Affair’s Willoughby offices in North Sydney before arresting him.
McCormack missed the first court mention of his child porn case due to still being hospitalised a month after he checked himself in.
Mr Macedone told reporters at the time that McCormack was “not in a good place” and wasn't well enough to discuss his plea.