Police of several countries in a joint mission called Operation Rescue, have arrested 184 alleged members out of 670 identified, of an online paedophile ring and rescued 230 children which is considered as the biggest case of its kind. “The victims are now rescued from further harm,” the policing agency’s director Rob Wainwright told journalists in The Hague. “We expect these numbers to rise further,” he said, adding: “This is already the biggest case of its kind we have ever seen.”
Europol, the European police, said the probe started three years ago, and targeted an online network, whose server was based in the Netherlands with almost 70,000 members worldwide. The suspects were members of an online forum, boylover(dot)net, that promoted sex between adults and young boys.
Europol further added that the website operated as a forum where members could join and contact someone then throught other channels like email they would then exchange images and films of children being abused.
“I can confirm that this is one of the most successful police operations in recent years in what is probably the largest online paedophile network in the world,” Wainwright said, “The operation is continuing and more arrests are expected.”
In the course of the investigation, the agency sent more than 4,000 intelligence reports to police authorities in more than 30 countries.
Among the various countries involved in the operation, some were Australia, Belgium, Canada, Greece, Iceland, Italy, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Poland, Romania, Spain, the UK and the United States.