International authorities fight online child abuse

By

Ricardo Swire

Caribbean internal security professionals are responsible for the protection of approximately forty million residents, among them a vulnerable and defenseless societal group. At the turn of the twenty-first century the sexual abuse of children and associated evils morphed to a globalized market that preys on developing nations. International statistics estimate child predators abused and forced more than nine million children into prostitution.

Regionally in 2013 Jamaican legislators introduced the Child Care and Protection Act. Kingston administrators also implemented the “Ananda Alert,” a warning system to help locate the island’s missing children. On 6 February, 2017 a male Jamaican passenger was detained at Orlando International Airport in Florida USA, after deplaning a flight from Norman Manley International Airport, Jamaica. US Customs & Border Protection (CBP) officers, acting on shared intelligence, detained the islander and searched his smartphone.

The CBP officers found two child pornography videos, one exclusively featuring Jamaican schoolchildren. The traveler admitted to Homeland Security investigators that he circulated the illicit images while on the island. Across the waters on Trinidad & Tobago the Child Protection Task Force (CPTF) was established specifically to police chronic child abuse and juvenile murders. 2013 was the year Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) officers, working with international colleagues in Project Spade, arrested 348 suspects, 386 abused children rescued. The international child pornography and distribution network operated from Canada.

In another revelation a reputable Dutch human rights organization alerted law enforcement to stark evidence of “online” child abuse. The group legitimately operated a social media “chat room” hosted by an animated, three dimensional ten year old Philippine girl called “Sweeny.” The Dutch group recorded 20,000 predators and pedophiles, from 71 different countries, who propositioned the child simulation for sexual services and favors.

At the end of March 2017 Spanish High-Tech Crime Unit (HTCU) detectives accelerated “Operation Tantalio.”Originally launched in 2016 the investigation focuses on Dark Net‘s Tor browser and encryption network, popular with criminal characters who prefer masked identities. EUROPOL and INTERPOL Operation Tantalio representatives in South and Central America, Germany, Italy, Spain and Europe searched residences and confiscated hundreds of electronic devices.

EUROPOL officials reported commandeered technology contained “child sex exploitation material.” Several images and video were entered in INTERPOL’s International Child Sexual Exploitation (ICSE) database, the special electronic file facilitates analysis of digital, visual and audio content. The data allows internal security personnel to compare and connect abusers to victims and locations. Spain’s HTCU confiscated photos and videos showed “humiliating treatment” and “excessive brutality” that involved young children from babies to eight years of age.

Operation Tantalio probes select electronic connections targeted for sharing indecent images. Spain’s HTCU investigation found cyber-links that divert users to twenty-five private WhatsApp groups, admittance by invitation only. The WhatsApp platform is owned by social media heavyweight Facebook that has remained silent on the issue. HTCU also unearthed handwritten information inside a Lugo’s residence in northwestern Spain. The unofficial documents stated names, ages and places sexual encounters with children occurred. Some of the informal records dated back twenty years.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ricardo Swire - Tuck Magazine

Ricardo Swire

Ricardo Swire is the Principal Consultant at R-L-H Security Consultants & Business Support Services and writes on a number of important issues.

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