A paedophile who maintained his senior managerial position at ACT Health months after he was arrested for child sex crimes will not spend time behind bars.
Last year, police raided Bradley John Burch's Fyshwick home, where they found images of grown men and women having sex with children.
Burch, an executive branch manager at ACT Health, had online chats with what appeared to be pre-pubescent children, sometimes calling himself "daddy".
The 35-year-old also had online chats with other paedophiles. One told him she was having sex with a five-year-old child as they spoke, and the pair discussed opening a childcare centre together.
Police arrested Burch on October 10, 2019. Afterwards, he continued participating in internal ACT Health chat rooms where parents exchanged pictures of their children.
Burch pleaded guilty to possessing child pornography and sending child pornography to others in March this year. The territory's health minister, Rachel Stephen-Smith, said the sex offender was suspended without pay on May 14, and sacked from his job on May 22.
According to court documents, Burch told another paedophile in September last year: "[I] haven't been caught yet, but would be put away for a long time if I was."
In the ACT Supreme Court on Wednesday, Chief Justice Helen Murrell debunked that prophecy.
She sentenced Burch to 12 months' jail for transmitting child pornography, but said he would serve the term in the community rather than behind bars by way of an intensive correction order.
As part of the order, Burch would have to complete 200 hours of community service, be assessed for a sex offender program, and give ACT Corrective Services access to his home without notice.
The punishment was additional to a sentence Chief Justice Murrell previously imposed on Burch for possessing child pornography: a two-year good behaviour order with 100 hours of community service.
The fact Burch was allowed to keep working at ACT Health after his arrest sparked outrage in the territory. The ACT opposition's health spokeswoman, Vicki Dunne, said it represented "a catastrophic bungling of process and the community deserves to know why".
In the ACT Legislative Assembly earlier this month, Ms Stephen-Smith said she was advised "it was not lawful for other agencies to notify the ACT Health Directorate" about Burch's crimes.
She said Burch's employment contract had obliged him to notify his employer of serious charges but he hadn't done so.
With Steve Evans