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Judge weighs bail options for man facing child pornography charges

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A Winnipeg man charged with possessing and distributing tens of thousands of images of child pornography remains in custody following a bail application this afternoon.

Provincial court Judge Tracey Lord reserved her decision on the application for release by Luke Brandon Neumann, 27.

Crown prosecutor Bruce Sychuk opposed the release, arguing that Neumann described himself to police as a "boy lover," whose daily sexually fantasy is to make love to a young boy.

Neumann was arrested by Winnipeg Police July 4 following a search at his Portage Avenue home he shared with a roommate.

Neumann came to the attention of authorities in the U.S. in May, who discovered he was uploading images of young boys to the Internet.

American authorities contact the National Child Exploitation Coordination Centre in Ottawa, which contacted Winnipeg Police, who then executed a search warrant at a residence on Portage Avenue he shared with a roommate.

Defence counsel Kristee Logan said Neumann could be released on strict conditions, which include living with his father in B.C., a cash deposit of $3,000 and a surety of $5,000, and agreeing to take counseling while awaiting trial.

Lord said she would make a decision on Neumann’s release Monday afternoon.

Sychuk said following his arrest, Neumann admitted to police to possessing tens of thousands of still and video images of boys, whose age ranged from five to 14 years.

Lord was shown a random sample of images from Neumann’s collection that included young boys posing in sexually explicit poses, having sex with other young boys and sex with adult men.

Sychuk played a 20-minute excerpt of a recorded police interview, where Neumann, openly and without hesitation, said he had been a "boy lover" since the age of 12.

Neumann can be heard telling police that he loves young boys and would never hurt them, adding that he resorted to using images as a substitute to fulfill his sexual fantasies.

Neumann told police he started his current child pornography collection about two years ago.

Sychuk said police found Neumann had shared the child pornography images on the Internet with at least 130 other individuals.

Neumann said he had been sexually abused as a young boy by two older boys and his desire ever since was to find a loving relationship with a boy.

Neumann told police his parents took him to a hypnotherapist when he was 18 and apparently cured him but his desires returned a year later following a bout of depression.

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