Swedish Police Officer: Small Details Can End The Abuse Of A Child

A database of more than 520,000 images, some of unspeakable crimes: Interpol’s vast collection of photos of child sex abuse and its victims has played an important role in an ongoing search for a man seen in Internet photos abusing Southeast Asian boys.
”When you go home from work that day, you think, ‘OK. I spent all that time looking at this but I found this small detail that will probably be the end of the abuse for the child”. said Anders Persson, a Swedish police officer assigned to Interpol’s division that combats human trafficking.
”I’ve done a lot of work during my career even giving out speeding tickets and it’s not all that appreciated”, Persson added.
”But this this is appreciated … Rewarding, that’s the word”.
Persson said that in previous cases, details in photos like a hospital towel in Spain, an electric socket distinctive to North America or a bedspread at Florida’s Disney World helped to solve or provide leads in child sex cases.
By way of example, Persson showed an Associated Press reporter a series of pictures not related to the latest case, pointing out possible clues.
One photo showed a dollhouse.
”Ah, but that’s available all over” Persson said. Another showed a radiator.
”I’m quite sure it’s in Europe. England, maybe”, he said.
The unknown suspect in the latest case came to police attention in March 2006 when 15 images of the man, including some of him allegedly sexually abusing children, were found in a computer seized from a man in Norway, Interpol said.
Those photos and others received in the two years since have been run through Interpol’s database, which compared them against other images for matches. In all, the database and police investigations have helped turn up a total of around 800 images, including nearly 100 of the man himself and others of his suspected victims or places where he is thought to have committed his alleged crimes, Interpol said.
A major message of the appeal by Interpol only the second of its kind after another last October led to the arrest of suspect Christopher Paul Neil in Thailand only 11 days later is that pedophiles cannot expect to hide in the anonymity of the Internet.
”When we go public with a child abuser, the whole world reacts”, Persson said.
”It goes to show that crimes against children are not tolerated, and people do whatever they can to support the police”.


 


 

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