Businessman caught filming women under their dresses
A BUSINESSMAN caught filming women under their dresses then uploaded the images to a Russian message board.
Police prosecutor Jack Scott told Ipswich Magistrates Court nine images of females were found by investigators but Steven Bird admitted only to filming one of them, saying he only distributed the other images.
"It is colloquially known as upskirting. An insidious offence. All were adult women and the victims remain unknown," Mr Scott said.
"And (his behaviour) is totally unexplained."
British-born Bird was identified through an account he set up called 'Birdman007'.
Steven Glenn Bird, 48, a father of two from Bellbowrie, pleaded guilty to making observations/recordings in breach of privacy of genital or anal region; and distributing prohibited visual recordings of unknown females between March 21, 2019 and August 30, 2019.
His "disgusting" offences were exposed by detectives who usually investigate child pornography offences.
It was made clear in court all images are of adult women.
Mr Scott said Bird has no criminal history and it was not suggested that any of the females were under 18.
He said the recordings violated their privacy and were detected by an Argos police investigation that usually investigates child exploitation material.
"It is unlikely they will ever be identified," Mr Scott said.
"He has distributed the images of another seven.
"They are out there and nothing can be done to retrieve them."
The Argos investigation located 21 'upskirting' images on his Birdman007 picture album, mostly taken of women when climbing stairs.
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He used the Russian site between March and August last year and signed off with the message 'more to come'.
One photo of a female in a red skirt and sitting on a chair was recognised as taken in Royal Brisbane and Women's Hospital.
Bird admits only to filming that image.
Police believe all images were filmed in Australia.
None show the faces of the women.
The investigation discovered Bird had purchased an ultra-thin 8mm endoscope phone camera extension that helps take images from inaccessible places.
Mr Scott said police sought a three to six month jail term to be suspended for 12 months.
Mr Scott argued that a conviction be recorded, saying Bird "fell well short of his obligations to his fellow man" and such offending attracts community condemnation.
Defence lawyer Richard Zande sought some leniency and for no conviction to be recorded, saying Bird had never offended previously and a conviction would likely cause him to lose his career and marriage.
"He says to the police I know who took the photograph," he said.
"He was suggesting he took the photo.
"He did the one photo at (Royal Brisbane and Women's Hospital).
"The other photos were a redistribution as he didn't actually take those pictures.
"His wife doesn't know about these offences and he is very concerned if she finds out it will spell the end of his marriage.
"He doesn't understand why he did it. Says he will never ever do anything like this again and is very embarrassed.
"There is a very real prospect he will lose his job (if a conviction is recorded).
"In time he will tell his wife."
Magistrate Andy Cridland said they were serious offences and carried a maximum penalty of three years in jail.
"As the prosecution submitted these types of offences are disgusting and disturbing," he said.
"That you have no criminal history at your age is relevant in penalty consideration.
"Your family is not aware. I find it hard to accept that you are remorseful for what has taken place.
"It is a matter where you would benefit by an order of probation."
Bird interjected by saying he was "deeply remorseful."
Bird was ordered to complete a two year supervised probation order.
"Realistically this is a matter where a conviction should be recorded," Mr Cridland said.
Read more stories by Ross Irby here.