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NSW court tough on babysitting abuser

AAP logoAAP 28/07/2016 By Sophie Tarr

A NSW babysitter who sexually abused an autistic 6-year-old boy who he was supposed to be looking after has had his jail sentence extended to a maximum of 10 years on appeal.

Antonio Scavera befriended the boy's mother on Facebook and agreed to look after her son in December 2013, while she went out for dinner with her partner.

But once he was alone with the child, Scavera subjected him to sex acts for up to an hour, recording the abuse on an iPad.

Scavera pleaded guilty to possessing child pornography, along with a charge of aggravated indecent assault on a child and two counts of aggravated sexual intercourse with a child.

Last November he was sentenced to six years and six months in jail, with a non-parole period of four years and two months - a penalty prosecutors said was "manifestly inadequate".

The NSW Court of Criminal Appeal on Thursday extended Scavera's total non-parole period to seven years, with a total term of imprisonment of 10 years.

"The offences involving, as they did, a victim aged only 6 years old, need to be firmly denounced," Justice Peter Garling said.

According to an agreed statement of facts tendered last year before the sentencing judge, Acting District Court Judge Norman Delaney, the abuse was not uncovered by authorities until December 2014, when Scavera was arrested at a shopping centre over unrelated matters.

Police searched his home and found the iPad, along with electronic equipment containing hundreds of child abuse images and videos, and pairs of little boys' underwear.

Scavera was interviewed by police and admitted abusing the 6-year-old in 2013.

According to a psychologist who treated the victim, he was a "vulnerable child" who had trouble communicating and met all of the criteria for an autism-aspergers spectrum disorder.

The child's mother told the court they had been forced to move house because her son could no longer live in the home where the abuse occurred.

The earliest Scavera can be released on parole is now December 2021.

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