Former Channel Nine journalist Ben McCormack has been spared jail time over child pornography charges.
In September, the 43-year-old reporter pleaded guilty to using a carriage service to promote child pornography, after raids of both his work and home in April.
While no pictures or videos of children were involved, McCormack exchanged explicit messages on Skype for almost two years with an unnamed man.
NSW District Court Judge Paul Conlon said on Wednesday that McCormack was "fantasising", ABC reports.
“In this case, there were no videos, photos or images of pornography and there were no actual child victims," Judge Colon said, reports Nine News.
Though the maximum sentence was 15 years in jail, McCormack was sentenced with a $1,000 fine and a three-year good behaviour bond.
The judge said case was different from other child pornography cases he had dealt with because most involved videos or photos of children.
Judge Conlon also said McCormack had not tried to groom young people for sex and noted that McCormack had sought professional help for his paedophile urges since 2008. He also revealed McCormack had tried to kill himself twice since the allegations were made public.