A 42-year-old Australian man has been charged with 931 child sex offences after allegedly posing as Justin Bieber online to groom young fans.
Queensland police claimed the man had used Facebook and Skype to pose as the Canadian pop singer, and allege the suspect's offences stretch back to at least 2007.
"Police are asking Justin Bieber fans and their parents to be extra vigilant when using the Internet after a man was charged with multiple serious offences after posing as the singer online," police said in a statement.
"Detectives from [online child abuse squad] Argos had been investigating a man who allegedly posed as Justin online in order to solicit explicit images from young children."
Canadian singer Justin Bieber poses at an event in Hong Kong in June 2015. (Photo: Bobby Yip/Reuters)
Police said the man had previously been arrested for "a number of child sex offences" including possession of child exploitation material and grooming young people online.
Further investigations, including "a thorough examination of the man's computer," saw him this week charged with an additional 931 child sex offences including rape, indecent treatment of children, making child exploitation material, using a carriage service to procure person under 16, and using a carriage service for child pornography material.
"It will be alleged that the man used multiple online platforms including Facebook and Skype to communicate with his victims," police said.
"The fact that so many children could believe that they were communicating with this particular celebrity highlights the need for a serious rethink about the way that we as a society educate our children about online safety."
The Argos unit has become famous for its work in investigating those using the Internet to commit child sex offences.
"The fact that so many children could believe that they were communicating with this particular celebrity highlights the need for a serious rethink about the way that we as a society educate our children about online safety," said Detective Inspector John Rouse.
"This investigation demonstrates both the vulnerability of children that are utilizing social media and communication applications and the global reach and skill that child sex offenders have to groom and seduce victims.
"The breadth of offences committed in this instance are frankly horrendous and I want to recognize the efforts and commitment of the investigative team at Taskforce Argos to keeping children safe."
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The following signs may indicate the possibility of child abuse, according to the Sheldon Kennedy Child Advocacy Centre:
Unexplained bruises or injuries, especially in places of the body that children do not normally injure during regular play or movement
A child who is continually hungry, unsuitably dressed for the weather and/or always dirty
Burns which leave a pattern outlining the object which was used to make the burn, such as a cigarette, an iron or an electric stove burner, burns on the hands, feet or buttocks caused by scalding water and rope burns caused by being tied
A young child who is often left alone
A child who is unusually aggressive, angry and hostile to other people
A child who demonstrates withdrawn behaviour, who refuses to participate or dress appropriately for physical activities
A child who shows unusual knowledge of sexual matters beyond their age of development, who exhibits sexualized behaviour around adults or other children
A child who hints or talks overtly about sexual abuse
An adolescent who is extremely withdrawn or aggressive
A child or adolescent who repeatedly runs away from home