Damian Scott Wanstall, 47, was charged with trying to procure a 14-year-old girl for sex
Parents at a Sydney high school where a deputy principal was charged with child sex offences have been urged to ask their children whether they had been ‘subject to’ offences committed by him.
Damian Scott Wanstall, 47, was arrested by the Child Abuse and Sex Crimes Squad at Westmead, in Sydney’s western suburbs, about 4.30pm on Monday.
Police allege that less than an hour after leaving Kellyville High School for the day, Wanstall drove to Westmead to meet a teenage girl for sex.
He had allegedly encountered the girl on a free online classified after seeking sex with ‘legal Indian or Filo teens wanting fun’.
As news of Wanstall’s arrest filtered through on Tuesday, parents received a letter from Kellyville High School’s acting principal Mark Burnard.
In the note Mr Burnard said his former deputy had been stood down ‘immediately’, before telling parents to call local police if their children told them they had been ‘subject to or witness (to) any potential offences’ at the hands of Wanstall.
Parents at Kellyville High School were sent this letter by the current principal Mark Burnard on Tuesday afternoon
Wanstall had allegedly been chatting to the girl on online classified Locanto – which is regularly advertised on by sex workers – and told her the sex acts he had planned to perform
‘You may be aware that a person was charged this week with a number of criminal offences that are child related,’ the letter read.
‘I can confirm that the person who is the subject of the police matter is a Deputy Principal at our school, however they are no long undertaking their duties.
‘In circumstances such as these, departmental employees are immediately removed from their duties in order to manage any risk to students.
‘It is possible your son or daughter, or a child under your care was a student of the teacher.
‘If your child discloses they have been subject to or witnessed any potential offences committed by this person it is requested that you contact Castle Hill Police station.’
A school assembly will be held on Wednesday and counsellors will be available.
Wanstall was allegedly chatting to what he thought was a teenage girl on Locanto – a free online classified advertising site regularly used by sex workers.
He had initially placed an ad on the website that read: ‘Any legal Indian or Filo teens want fun’
’40yo aussie daddy sexy play this weekend. Will reward. Can host discreetly Rouse Hill,’ he wrote.
He allegedly received a response he believed was from an underage teen girl and he replied telling her the sex acts he planned to perform, while also offering to pay her.
But when he finally went to meet up with the girl he was instead met by officers from the NSW Police, who had been posing as the child online the whole time.
Wanstall did not appear in Fairfield Local Court on Tuesday and his lawyer made no application for bail.
He is charged with one count of using a carriage service to procure a child under 16 for sexual activity, and one count of using a carriage service to solicit child abuse material.
He will reappear in court next Tuesday, December 15, to make a bail application.
Damian Wanstall allegedly placed this advertisement headed ‘Any legal Indian or Filo teens want fun’ on the Locanto free classifieds site. ’40yo aussie daddy sexy play this weekend’
‘I can confirm that the person who is the subject of the police matter is a Deputy Principal at our school, however they are no long undertaking their duties,’ a letter from current principal Mark Burnard said (Pictured is Wanstall on a holiday in New Zealand)
Wanstall did not appear in Fairfield Local Court on Tuesday and his lawyer made no application for bail
Wanstall is charged with one count of using a carriage service to procure a child under 16 for sexual activity, and one count of using a carriage service to solicit child abuse material
Hassan Khan picks his grandson up from the high school everyday and said he found it ‘concerning’ that someone in a position of such power could be charged with such a serious offence involving children.
‘It’s very concerning, very concerning. I am really shocked at that,’ he said.
Another parent who did not want to be named said she was worried about keeping her daughter at the school.
‘It is concerning that someone can make it all the way up to deputy principal before they are then charged (with such serious offences),’ the mother said.
‘I had already considered taking my daughter out at the end of the year, she is going into Year 11, and now I am really thinking about it.
‘My son already goes to a private school and in recent years it has just dropped of a cliff here at Kellyville.’
But other parents were not so concerned about the impact on the school.
‘I’ve seen him around the school, I know who he is,’ one father said.
‘I have no concerns about the school from this though, the school is great. They are great on things such as cyber bullying, so no complaints with the school.
‘But it is shocking to hear that a member of staff is charged with something like this, I must admit that.’
Neighbours told Daily Mail Australia that Wanstall had moved to Rouse Hill about a decade ago after separating from his wife.
Wanstall was arrested by police in Sydney’s western suburbs, at about 4.30pm on Monday
Wanstall is led away by police following his arrest in Sydney’s western suburbs on Monday
Police will allege the 47-year-old thought he was speaking with a 14-year-old girl when he began discussing the sexual acts he wished to perform on the child
They said a daughter often lived with him and he had an on-and-off girlfriend in the years since his first marriage ended.
When they saw police at his home on Monday afternoon they thought nothing of it.
‘He’d lived there probably ten plus years, he was divorced and moved there after that I suppose,’ one neighbour said.
‘I saw the cops here yesterday coming out of the house and I didn’t know what was going on and I didn’t inquire.
‘We’d talk regularly. I knew he was a deputy at Kellyville (High School) so I’m a bit shocked by this all.’
Students will be offered counselling and the charges against Wanstall wil be discussed at a whole school assembly on Wednesday
After arresting Wanstall on Monday detectives searched his Rouse Hill home and seized several items including a laptop and an electronic storage device.
The deputy principal was then taken to Granville Police Station and he was charged.
Detectives from the Child Abuse and Sex Crime Squad’s Child Exploitation Internet Unit (CEIU) began speaking to Wanstall online earlier this month.
The mathematics teacher had worked at the Sydney public school for almost ten years.