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Child protection agency applauds NZ Police

Press Release

Child protection agency applauds NZ Police

A 49-year-old man in Ireland who offered to show a live film on the internet of himself having sex with a 13 year old boy was caught after Irish law enforcement received a tip-off from police in Britain and New Zealand.

The sex offender, who cannot be named to protect the identity of his victims, was caught downloading child porn when his house was raided.

Alan Bell from ECPAT Child ALERT applauds this international collaboration. “This is a great example of law enforcement agencies working together to bring offenders to justice. The New Zealand Police, Internal Affairs and Customs all have specialised forensic units not only monitoring illegal child sex abuse images in New Zealand but are also contributing to this global online exploitation of children. The Internet knows no borders and it is imperative that this crime is attacked both nationally and internationally” says Bell.

More than 50 images were recovered of the boy's abuse, which occurred at the man's house following a period of "grooming".

They police also recovered more than 50,000 other child pornography images and 3,000 video files from the man's computer equipment.

He had recorded his sexual abuse of the boy and distributed images through the internet using a programme to connect with others of a similar inclination. The offender had been promising another user he would have sex with the boy live on camera. He also pleaded guilty to possession and distribution of child pornography related to an image of a five-year-old boy.

He had categorised his online collection of child pornography images into several "levels", which he then shared with others based on the level of the images they shared with him.

Det Sgt Tom Mahon said that prior to the sexual abuse there was a period of "grooming" while the boy was aged between 12 and 13.

ECPAT states “These are not just virtual images. They are images of real children being abused – often very young and often filmed live to meet a customer’s perverted preferences. In this case the images were being traded and used as a form of currency. In other words the child victims were being bought and sold as commodities with their own face value. Law enforcement forensic technology in New Zealand is among the world’s best but to prevent this crime our whole society must become aware and ensure our children are adequately protected from the predators.”

The New Zealand Police had infiltrated a forum where people were exchanging child pornography and passed their information about the Irish offender on to Ireland authourities.

The man pleaded guilty to sample counts of production and distribution of child pornography, sexual exploitation of a minor, sexual assault, rape and attempted rape of the teenage boy. Mr Justice Carney imposed a 12-year sentence.


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