Thanks to citizen collaboration through the portal www.policia.es/colabora.php
The National Police detain 12 pedophiles and dismantle a website that was dedicated to the sale of child sexual abuse material
The administrator of the website –as well as its servers- was in Portugal and was detained by the Portuguese police thanks to the indications of the agents of the Central Cybercrime Unit
The subsequent investigation into the users of the commercial website allowed the identification and arrest of the rest of the pedophiles in Barcelona, Gerona, Sabadell, Cáceres, Albacete, Cádiz, Castellón, Madrid, Málaga, Murcia and Valencia
The detainees, all of them young and even four of them minors, exchanged sexual material through instant messaging
The investigation has had the support and collaboration of EUROPOL, INTERPOL and the Portuguese Public Security Police
06-October-2020.- Agents of the National Police have dismantled a web page that, allegedly, was dedicated to the sale of child sexual abuse material and have arrested 12 pedophiles in Barcelona, Gerona, Sabadell, Cáceres, Albacete, Cádiz, Castellón, Madrid, Málaga, Murcia, Valencia and Portugal. The administrator of the website was in the Portuguese country and was arrested by police officers from that country thanks to the indications of the agents of the Central Cybercrime Unit. The subsequent investigation into the users of the commercial website allowed the identification and arrest of pedophiles who exchanged sexual material through instant messaging. The investigation has had the support and collaboration of EUROPOL, INTERPOL and the Portuguese Public Security Police.
The investigation began thanks to citizen information received through the portal www.policia.es/colabora.php that put the agents on the trail of a website for the commercial distribution of pedophile material.
The police officers proceeded to a detailed analysis of the investigated website, obtaining data that allowed the tracking and location of its administrator, a citizen residing in Portugal and who regularly obtained large economic benefits derived from these activities. In order to make the business profitable, and obtain significant profits, they offered two different channels: one of them is to make a direct payment through virtual currencies or online economic management platforms, which allows the visitor to avoid advertising. The second is to interpose an advertising intermediary between the page and the images of child sexual abuse. That way, every time someone accesses that link, the creator of the illegal website receives a small consideration.
When determining his location in Portugal, the National Police requested through EUROPOL the collaboration of his counterparts in that country and, based on the information provided by the agents of the Central Cybercrime Unit, he was detained and later imprisoned. The page was hosted by a service provider and, at the request of the Spanish authorities, it was dismantled.
Identification of twelve pedophiles in our country
However, the researchers continued the analysis of the web and located a section of instant messaging groups dedicated to child sexual abuse material. In this way, full identification was achieved of the rest of pedophiles in Spain who, having established contact on the web, used messaging applications through mobile telephony to exchange sexual material of minors. Some of them exhibited humorous attitudes towards the abuse of children and had a compulsive consumption of illegal material.
Among them is the arrest of an individual in Malaga who was one of the most active members in these investigated channels and with the highest volume of illegal material shared, a total of up to 38 videos of very young children subjected to serious sexual abuse. Also striking is the presence of a minor, arrested in Barcelona, who had shared 49 videos and 9 photographs of very young girls in a very short space of time.
Youth of arrested pedophiles
It is worth highlighting the youth of the detainees, of which four were minors and seven were in their twenties and the mobile phone was the main means of committing the crime. Minors often have this tool to connect to the Internet without supervision, and in fact, it is the preferred instrument for doing so. For this reason, the National Police advises that minors always have parental supervision over their online activity, as well as that the need to have these terminals outside their home be assessed.
The agents have proven that those investigated shared advice to avoid their criminal responsibility, avoiding detection and exchanging information on channels that guarantee their privacy and security to the maximum. In addition, and as usual, they used both nomenclature and content, codes and jargon to avoid drawing attention to the material that it actually housed.
During the investigation, the agents were also able to identify two Colombian citizens, whose information was forwarded through INTERPOL to that country so that they would act in accordance with its legislation.