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Miklos Bolza

No bail for ex-cop on abuse charge despite jail threats

A former police officer charged with abusing a teen has been denied bail in the NSW Supreme Court. (Bianca De Marchi/AAP PHOTOS)

A former police officer accused of sexually assaulting a 13-year-old boy has lost his bid for bail after being allegedly found with child abuse material on his phone.

Mark Ward, 48, was arrested in June this year after being accused of arranging to meet at the boy's home for sex in 2018 while his mother was out.

The alleged victim, who cannot be named for legal reasons, reported the matter to police in March this year.

Ward was originally charged with two counts of sexual intercourse with a young person between 10 and 14 years old and a further count of using a carriage service to send child abuse material to a person under 16 years old.

On September 20, he was hit with a fourth charge of possessing nine photographs of child abuse material.

Ward made a bid for bail in the NSW Supreme Court on Wednesday, when his lawyer argued the former police officer faced a more onerous time in custody because of his prior role in law enforcement.

"He tells me he still finds himself in positions where people are grabbing him and he has been threatened in that environment," Justice Richard Cavanagh was told.

The court heard that bail should be granted due to potential delays in the matter going to trial and difficulties Ward faced finding mental health treatment behind bars after being diagnosed with depression in 2018.

Proposed bail conditions included that Ward live with his parents and face restrictions on his access to computers and the internet.

Crown prosecutors opposed bail, saying the former police officer had shown an ongoing sexual interest in young children by allegedly downloading the child abuse material onto his phone.

"What you have here is actual children being used and images that involve actual sexual intercourse and one of them involving a two-year-old," the court was told.

Attending the court proceedings from Parklea prison via videolink, Ward cupped his hands over his mouth as Justice Cavanagh dismissed the bail bid, saying that none of the reasons were enough to justify the ex-cop's release.

"The offending conduct is obviously very serious," the judge said.

There was no evidence that Ward currently experienced symptoms of depression, Justice Cavanagh found.

Any vulnerability in custody because of his former position with the NSW police force was also not sufficient on its own to grant bail, he added.

"Having regard to my views as to the factors relied upon by the applicant ... I'm not satisfied that cause has been shown and bail is refused," Justice Cavanagh said.

Ward will next come before Campbelltown Local Court on November 1.

1800 RESPECT (1800 737 732)

National Sexual Abuse and Redress Support Service 1800 211 028

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