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Old 03-16-2011, 11:30 AM
Valleyboy Valleyboy is offline
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230 kids rescued from ‘largest online pedophile network in the world’

http://www.thestar.com/news/world/ar...the-world?bn=1


230 kids rescued from ‘largest online pedophile network in the world’
Published 13 minutes agoEmail Print Share Rss Article

Mike Corder
Associated Press
THE HAGUE, NETHERLANDS—Police said Wednesday they have smashed a huge international pedophile ring, rescuing 230 children from abuse and arresting 184 suspects — including teachers and police officers.

The three-year investigation code-named Operation Rescue identified and safeguarded children in more than 30 countries by arresting people suspected of abusing them, said Rob Wainwright, director of the European Union police agency Europol.

The ring was centred on an Amsterdam-based online forum called boylover.net, which Wainwright described as “probably the largest online pedophile network in the world.”

The heavily encrypted forum, whose administrator appeared in a Dutch court on Tuesday charged with sex offences, had up to 70,000 members.

The investigation was led by Britain’s Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre but also involved law enforcement agencies as far afield as Australia, the United States and Thailand.

Peter Davies of the British child protection centre said there would be more arrests as the investigations continue.

“Those who have been members of the site can expect a knock on the door in the very near future,” he said. In Britain, police said, the children involved were aged between 7 and 14.

Wainwright said the website was intended as a discussion forum where pedophiles could “share their sexual interest in young boys.”
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Old 03-16-2011, 11:35 AM
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70,000 members? I hope those who get that "knock on the door" will get more than just a slap on the wrist.
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Old 03-16-2011, 11:54 AM
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I am wondering for how many years this online pedophile network has operated and if some of the cases of abducted boys from the U.S. are a part of this.

Last edited by concentric; 03-16-2011 at 12:07 PM.
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Old 03-16-2011, 12:07 PM
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70,000 members??? Are there really that many perverts out there? How scary!!!
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Old 03-16-2011, 12:21 PM
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OMG. How disturbing. 70,000 members?? LE, release their names and address please.

Who are these poor children?? Prayers for them. They are safe now.
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Old 03-16-2011, 12:36 PM
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Just when you think it can't get any worse...
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Old 03-16-2011, 12:41 PM
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This article details how the internet ring was infiltrated:

More in article

http://www.latimes.com/news/nationwo...,7488821.story

"The website operated from a server based in the Netherlands and, at its height, boasted up to 70 000 members worldwide," Europol said in a news release.

The website -- now taken down -- tried to operate as a "discussion-only" forum in which people operated "below the radar" of police by sharing "their sexual interest in young boys without committing any specific offenses."

"Having made contact on the site, some members would move to more private channels, such as e-mail, to exchange and share illegal images and films of children being abused. Computers seized from those arrested have harvested huge quantities of child abuse images and videos," Europol said.

Britain's Child Exploitation and Online Protection Center located the website owner and traced the server to the Netherlands in 2009.

"In January 2010, a copy of the seized site's server was received by Europol, and the Australian and UK police. Working with Zaanstreek-Waterland Police in the Netherlands, Europol rebuilt the forum offline and forensically interrogated the server to produce intelligence analysis that was disseminated globally to law enforcement authorities," Europol said.
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Old 03-16-2011, 01:25 PM
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Thank you Valleyboy for posting this thread. The investigators are my heroes. This is a good day.

http://www.torontosun.com/news/canad.../17639391.html

The European Union's police agency, Europol, is taking credit for identifying the child-sex ring, which operated through an online forum -- boylover.net -- that promoted sexual relationships between adults and young boys.

"The safeguarding of so many vulnerable children is particularly rewarding and demonstrates the commitment of our agency to make Europe a safer place for its citizens," Europol director Rob Wainwright said in a release.

"I also pay tribute to the relevant authorities in Europe and elsewhere for their operational work in tracking down the suspected criminals and their victims."

Cops from the U.K and Australia infiltrated the Netherlands-based site to access information on its members.

Last edited by concentric; 03-16-2011 at 01:39 PM.
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Old 03-16-2011, 01:58 PM
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It seems to me I've always read that the Netherlands has one of the lowest rape rates in the world because of decriminalizing prostitution. There is a very visible red-light district.

The contrast between that supposed statistic and this investigation really boggles the mind.
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Old 03-16-2011, 03:11 PM
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Originally Posted by concentric View Post
It seems to me I've always read that the Netherlands has one of the lowest rape rates in the world because of decriminalizing prostitution. There is a very visible red-light district.

The contrast between that supposed statistic and this investigation really boggles the mind.
Holland is very active in going after sex criminals, like we are. Their investigation has nothing to do with the red light district or a higher rate of sex crimes. Remember also that this was an international sting, not just in Holland.
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Old 03-16-2011, 03:30 PM
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Largest Internet Child-Abuse Ring Yet Uncovered after a Three-Year Operation

Two Canadians were arrested as part of what police are calling the largest Internet child-abuse ring yet uncovered after a three-year operation that saw 184 arrests worldwide and the rescue of 230 children.

Operation Rescue targeted an online forum called “boylover.net,” based in the Netherlands but with a global clientele. At a news conference Wednesday morning in The Hague, police said the network spread to 30 countries with 70,000 members.

Led by the British Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre, the investigation began in 2007 and brought together teams from Canada, the U.S., Australia, New Zealand and Europe.

Police say the website offered people the chance to discuss their sexual interest in young boys without committing any offences, but “below the radar” they used private channels to exchange “illegal images and films of children being abused.”

In Britain, police say the suspects range in age from 17 and 82, and include police officers, Boy Scout leaders and teachers.

“While these offenders felt anonymous in some way because they were using the Internet to communicate, the technology was actually being used against them,” said Peter Davies, the head of British child-exploitation unit. “Everything they did online was tracked by following the digital footprint.”

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/...rticle1944189/
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Old 03-16-2011, 03:54 PM
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I was just reading that same story on a CBS site.
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Old 03-16-2011, 03:59 PM
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There is a thread in the crimes about children section.. maybe the 2 can be combined
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Old 03-16-2011, 04:38 PM
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I'm always pleased when there is a large bust. I have every reason to believe that one leads to another and that is why there is such a long time between the beginning of an investigation, the arrest, the indictment, the plea, and the sentencing. Currently, in the US, the "turnaround" for federal child porn charges with a guilty plea is taking about 2-3 years. I often wonder if LE doesn't use that time to assume a pedophiles profile and bring down more offenders.

Typically names are not released, unless they are high profile. This used to anger me greatly as how are families and community member supposed to know about the risks to their children. Very very seldom are these busts covered in mid-sized newspapers and only marginally mentioned in even the largest. One must really take notes to follow these cases. You have to take the tiniest details and really dig to follow some of these perps and their cases. I've now come to understand that the main thrust, IMO, is to take down as many offenders as possible. As a parent of children who have been raped, I have mixed feeling about that. We get far better info concerning recalls of cars and frozen dinners than we do the pedophiles in our midst. But it's finally sinking in what the feds and Interpol are trying to do. I guess, in the scheme of things, this is the only way to go.

While looking to see if this bust was connected to another huge bust announced in Los Angeles a couple of months ago, Lost Boys, I ran across an interesting article:

http://articles.latimes.com/1987-09-...nography-photo

This is from 1987 and shows that things are only getting worse. I have cached copies of major busts conducted over the last 12 years as articles often disappear. I'm not sure why. One of the themes that shows up again and again is that law enforcement is greatly overwhelmed and simply cannot investigate each case of even the arrested. But every single arrest has great impact. Every one.

I won't be posting much for a few days due to health problems.
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Old 03-16-2011, 04:48 PM
Missizzy Missizzy is offline
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I think I've posted this before, but in case I'm not back for a while, someone else needs to bookmark this. I've gleaned a lot of info from this document which I believe first appeared on a Focus on the Family site:

http://webcache.googleusercontent.co...&client=safari

If you have these sting titles and names of articles, often sleuthing is easier. It's a tangled web, that's for sure. I wish someone could connect the dots for the victims and the families.



ETA: The following is the type of comment that shows up again and again on some of the articles linked to from the article above:

"Results: By the time of the first press reports, Canadian police had made up to 100 arrests. This represents less than five percent of the names contained on a list of Canadian subscribers. Canadian police say the country is woefully unprepared to handle such large-scale investigations....."

I don't post this to disparage Canada at all. This single statement is indicative of comments made by many countries and municipalities. The crime is overwhelming in its scope and range.

Last edited by Missizzy; 03-16-2011 at 04:56 PM.
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Old 03-16-2011, 05:00 PM
Missizzy Missizzy is offline
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For an excellent example of timelines, here's a representative case chosen at random. Pay special attention to the dates:

http://kansascity.fbi.gov/dojpressre...1/kc031011.htm

I read through scores of press releases like this every morning. This is just a good example of how long the process takes. And it's highly unlikely that many community members knew that this man was arrested back in 2008 nor how the case progressed.


ETA: I searched and searched and this is the sole article I could find concerning Powell's arrest. Whenever someone lives outside a major metro area or if a local paper is by subscription only, there is very little coverage. Powell lived in La Plata, MO which is 165 miles from KC, MO. This would have been the only information local people would have:

http://www.heartlandconnection.com/n...aspx?id=166773

Two years later, they might have seen this update, if they were watching:

http://www.heartlandconnection.com/n...aspx?id=449921

It would be another year before the FBI issued a press release concerning the sentencing. My point is that there's a very real disconnect for the community. And it is the community that cares for the children.

Please keep in mind that this case is NOT related to this current bust (although, no one knows) but merely an example of how these cases proceed.

Last edited by Missizzy; 03-16-2011 at 05:24 PM.
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Old 03-16-2011, 06:46 PM
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It's important to keep in mind that each of these "massive stings" leads to the next. They're like building blocks. You'll note that this sting began in 2009 and that there have already been convictions in the US stemming from the sting:

http://www.europol.europa.eu/index.a...s=pr110316.htm

"....Known as Operation Rescue, this complex case has run for three years, with Europol supporting and coordinating investigations for the last 1.5 years. Law enforcement authorities have been brought together from 13 countries to track offenders on a truly global scale. Countries involved: Australia, Belgium, Canada, Greece, Iceland, Italy, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Poland, Romania, Spain, United Kingdom and the United States. Some other countries, although not listed, still have investigations ongoing in which suspects have been identified...."

more at link


And:

http://nymag.com/daily/intel/2011/03...ional_ped.html

"....Here in the United States there have already been five arrests and four convictions, and more leads are being followed...."

more at link

When I can, I'll see if I can put together some of the threads we have concerning these earlier arrests. You have to wonder just whose been arrested here in connection to this particular sting. In the meantime, being that only* 184 persons have been arrested from a pool of 70,000, everyone might want to keep an eye on friends and family and community members who might seem a little on edge. Surely this must filter down at some level and cause a momentary deterrent. Sad, but it never lasts.

*thankful for every single one!!
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Old 03-16-2011, 06:59 PM
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Just wanted to pop in for a "thanks". I'm so glad these people (things) were arrested and that many children have been saved. I'm shocked, sad, sickened, and glad at the same time - if that makes any sense.

I hope these arrests, lead to many others. As I'm sure the network has fingers that reach far and wide. This can't be an isolated group (IMHO).

Bless the children and may the Lord watch over them. May many other children be saved from such horror!

Mel
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Old 03-16-2011, 07:42 PM
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Looking back over our threads, I would have to choose these two as being most likely to be related to today's announcement:

Troy, MO man admits being part of pedophile ring - Websleuths Crime Sleuthing Community
(April 2010)

Former MO teacher's aide, Matt Klopfenstine, charged with producing child porn - Websleuths Crime Sleuthing Community
(Aug. 2010)

The second is about a young man, Matthew Klopfenstine, who was arrested in Troy, MO for producing child pornography with two other men. They filmed their sexual assaults of a young boy. You'll note that with lots of sleuthing and checking of dates, we determined who the other men were by deduction and circled back around to the first thread which preceded the second by several months. Here's two FBI PRs:

http://kansascity.fbi.gov/dojpressre...0/kc080610.htm

http://www.justice.gov/usao/moe/pres...n_michael.html

The earlier arrests are of Michael Paul Martin of Troy, MO and Jose Carlos Garcia of Scherville, IN who lured three boys. All the men also possessed child pornography.

You'll note the comments concerning involvement with a group called Boy Lovers. You'll also note that we could tell something was afoot as links and comments kept disappearing. Obviously, LE was attempting to lay low as more offenders could be caught. So, the sad story is that we, here at WS, probably have more information in one place about these three men than their own neighbors do. And new crimes are committed as cases are being built. That worries me to death.
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Old 03-16-2011, 07:53 PM
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this disguists me! 70 000!!!!! that is so scary. This hit our news today but there is very little information on it only that 4 australian children were rescued and people arrested here, it seems that a couple of australians were very high up as in the director and administrators , 31 australians arrested. One was an 84 year old man living in Thailand...yuk that dirty filthy old man living in a place where children are sold so as there families can survive......how evil. This circle must be broken, and I really think the backgrounds of these people looked into so as they can understand why. I am sure a huge percentage of them were themselves abused as boys.
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Old 03-16-2011, 07:58 PM
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Originally Posted by peeples View Post
There is a thread in the crimes about children section.. maybe the 2 can be combined
I am not sure how to do that, Peeples?
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Old 03-16-2011, 08:17 PM
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The more I read, the more I'm quite sure that these guys were some of the earlier arrestees:

http://www.examiner.com/crime-in-chi...ild-porn-sting

http://chicago.fbi.gov/dojpressrel/p...0/cg100610.htm

One, Garcia, shows up in our thread I linked to above but there's discussion that they had links to other "Boy Lovers". Even though they were arrested in September 2009, I only see one conviction so far...Neal Maschke got 108 months back for possessing and trading child pornography in late 2010. Some of the other men were manufacturing/producing/distributing child porn.
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Old 03-16-2011, 08:22 PM
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Revampz--Your last sentence is chilling as it is being born out in studies. Those who have been abused as children are far more likely to become obsessed and addicted to pornography. Sometimes, it is adult porn and sometimes, it is child pornography.

Some small studies are showing a trend of victims being interested in viewing child porn that closely resembles their own abuse (age, gender, types of assault). To me, this is so tragic and exactly why each abused child MUST be found and thoroughly treated. It seems so similar to being infected with a virus. Some are strong and fight off the illness, while others succumb to it.
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Old 03-16-2011, 08:58 PM
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Yes!!!! Boy lovers website is well known and I believe has been mentioned on here in the past as in we couldn't understand why it was allowed to operate so openly. So glad to see it is going down! I believe there is a girl lovers site also, hope they get that one too.
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Old 03-16-2011, 09:31 PM
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Originally Posted by Missizzy View Post
Revampz--Your last sentence is chilling as it is being born out in studies. Those who have been abused as children are far more likely to become obsessed and addicted to pornography. Sometimes, it is adult porn and sometimes, it is child pornography.

Some small studies are showing a trend of victims being interested in viewing child porn that closely resembles their own abuse (age, gender, types of assault). To me, this is so tragic and exactly why each abused child MUST be found and thoroughly treated. It seems so similar to being infected with a virus. Some are strong and fight off the illness, while others succumb to it.
Missizzy I think what you have put here is exactly what is happening. Over the years I have read so much on child sexual abuse and yes the studies confirm that it is a viscous cycle. How to fix it I dont know, but I do wish there was a way to take child sexual offenders completely out of sociey, so that the cycle is broken for newer generations. This may offend some people, but I have quite often suggested to my husband that they need to be put on an island like they did with lepers in the old days.

However their victims would need to undergo extreme therapy and monitored to break a cycle.

I just wish the authorities would try SOMETHING, as this is a subject I beleive affects the worlds society is so many ways.....all bad.
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