Seized sex dolls ‘show desire to rape children’

Child sex dolls may be an indicator of a desire to rape children, says the Dublin Rape Crisis Centre (DRCC) as gardaí made their first-ever discovery of a number of the dolls during a targeted search of 31 premises for child pornography this week.

“The concern is that if these so-called dolls are being used, that they are being used as a substitute for raping children,” said DRCC chief executive Noeline Blackwell.

Ms Blackwell said the gardaí have to stop the exploitation of children and stop the sale of anything that would lead to the exploitation of children.

A year ago, gardaí said there was no doubt that paedophiles in Ireland would import child sex dolls and feared they might be doing so already.

Gardaí found a number of child sex dolls in one of the searches this week under Operation Ketch.

Assistant commissioner John O’Driscoll said the discovery of the sex dolls is a “particular concern” for them. While a number of the dolls have been seized by customs officials, it was the first time gardaí had encountered the dolls during a search operation.

Mr O’Driscoll said: “It is an added concern to what is already an area that gives rise to considerable concern, to say the least.”

He said gardaí are anxious to highlight the extent of the problem of accessing material of this nature and that could help inform policymakers in terms of how best to address the issue.

The Department of Justice said yesterday there are no plans to amend the definition of child pornography.

The definition of child pornography in the Child Trafficking and Pornography Act relates to visual and audio

representations, descriptions, and information.

“There are currently no proposals to amend this definition further, but of course issues such as this are kept under continuing review,” said the department

Last month the US House of Representatives passed a bill — Curbing Realistic Exploitative Electronic Paedophilic Robots, or the ‘Creeper Act’ — proposing to ban the importation and transportation of sex dolls shaped and sized like a child.

Ms Blackwall said she understands why the gardaí would want to know about the sex dolls as an indicator of an unhealthy interest in having sex with children.

“I can see why gardaí would be concerned about it as an indicator of potential criminal activity,” she said.

The ISPCC said the creation, use, possession, or distribution of any sexual imagery or material that depicts a child is a matter of concern for them. Any adult engaged in this activity poses a potential risk to children.

Meanwhile, a woman who contacted RTÉ’s Liveline yesterday said her home had been raided as part of Operation Ketch.

She said she wanted to highlight the lack of support to families when a relative is investigated as part of a child abuse.

She wrote: “This is a horror you cannot imagine.”


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