A soldier who threatened to share nude photos of a woman unless she introduced him to her parents has been dismissed from the army at his court martial.
As well as being dismissed, 24-year-old Thomas Evans was today given a serious reprimand and ordered to pay his victim $1000.
Chief Judge Kevin Riordan said Evans’ offending was abusive and callous. He said Evans wanted to control the woman, and to make her feel threatened and scared.
Justice Riordan said dismissal from the army was the second most serious punishment a court martial could hand out.
He said a severe reprimand may not sound serious, but it was to make it clear that the army would not accept such behaviour and said it would remain on his record.
Evans was also sentenced to four months detention in July after pleading guilty to eight charges of using and supply cannabis and ecstasy.
Justice Riordan said the punishment for cyber bullying had recently been strengthened, and anyone found guilty in the future could expect to be dismissed from the defence force and given a sentence of detention.
Evans’ defence laywer, Tony Greig, said Evans was in a very unhappy place at the time of the offending.
Mr Greig said the slow process of dealing with the charges, starting in 2014 when he was first questioned by military police, had been difficult for Evans.
“For this one-off offence he committed three and a half years ago he is still waiting to hear what his fate will be, but he welcomes opportunity to pay compensation and he would like to make an apology in person but that is not possible as the victim is overseas.”
Earlier, Defence Force prosecutor Colonel Craig Ruane said Evans began an on-again-off-again relationship with a woman, who has name suppression, in 2013.
In March 2014, the woman complained to military police that Evans had messaged her threatening to share naked photos of her if she did not let him meet her parents.
Private Evans did send three topless photos to a friend, who is understood to have deleted them.
She made a complaint to military police in March 2014, but this was not followed up until Evans’ phone was seized as part of an inquiry into other charges.