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Whether or not it is an offence depends on the available law.
In cases of attempting to commit a sexual offence, there will also be a question of fact to answer - that is, whether the adult has taken steps towards carrying out their intent.
In 76 per cent of cases the suspect was arrested for an offence within one month of the first online contact.
However, a maximum penalty of 10 years applies if the child is, or is believed by the adult to be, less than 12 years of age.
In March 2002, Queensland Police began an undercover operation against a person whom they had discovered in a chat room seeking underage girls for sex.
These provisions have extra-territorial effect in relation to the location of the adult or the child, by the use of the words 'either in Queensland or elsewhere'.
The maximum penalty provided is five years imprisonment.
It reports on the 25 investigations into online grooming completed by the Queensland Police in the period June 2003 and September 2004 under the code name Task Force Argos.
The purpose of this study is to better understand how online grooming offences are committed and how they can be policed.
Computers connected to the internet provide a number of ways to communicate in real time with other people who can be anywhere, including across the room, hallway, road, city, state, country or world.
Various facilities are available to search out others with similar backgrounds or interests.
If a child enters an online chat room they may encounter an adult person, who may or may not be pretending to be a child, but who is on the lookout for a child to whom they can 'talk dirty', send obscene images, obtain sexually explicit pictures, engage in cybersex or meet for sex offline.