Detective accused of grooming a minor he came into contact with.
Detective accused of grooming a minor he came into contact with.

Cop accused: ‘Protector became the predator’

A DETECTIVE charged with grooming a minor was working in a child protection investigation unit and came into contact with his alleged victim through his work, it can be revealed.

Detective Senior Constable Matthew Paul Hockley, who joined the police service in 2013, was suspended from duty after being accused of using the internet to procure a child for sex.

It is understood the 32-year-old was stood down in August "in relation to (allegations of) improper sexual conduct towards a member of the public".

A statement by Queensland Police Service confirmed he was stood down after allegations came to light and suspended once charges were laid.

The Courier-Mail has been told the detective came into contact with his alleged victim during the course of an investigation.

Child protection investigation units assist in investigations into juvenile offenders or young victims of crime.

Detective Senior Constable Hockley, who works in the Brisbane region, was charged with three counts of child grooming, and it is alleged he intended to engage in sexual acts with the child and expose them to "indecent matter".

He has also been charged with two counts of using the internet to procure a child under 16.

His matter was heard briefly in the Brisbane Magistrates Court on Monday, but the detective did not appear.

The case will be heard again on October 14.

"A 32-year-old male senior constable was suspended from the Queensland Police Service on September 6 after being charged with five counts under section 218 of the Criminal Code - child grooming and use internet to procure," a police spokesman said yesterday.

"The officer is employed within the Brisbane Region.

"Given the nature of the offence, details of a specific work location and role are not provided in order to ensure the confidentiality of the complainant.

"As the matter is subject to court proceedings it is not appropriate to provide further details at this time."