US prosecutors said today they have broken an international child pornography ring that produced and distributed explicit images of infants and toddlers online.
The US attorney’s office in Indianapolis announced that seven men have been convicted, and two more defendants have pleaded guilty. Authorities are investigating suspects in the US, UK, Sweden, Serbia and the Netherlands.
First assistant US attorney Josh Minkler said more than two dozen children in the US and other countries were abused in the production of the pornography.
He said the children “far too often, weren’t old enough to comprehend the crimes committed against them”.
The investigation began in November 2010 with the arrest of David Bostic. Investigators raided his home in Indiana and found hundreds of images and videos on his computer of children between the ages of two months and four years engaged in sexual acts. He was convicted on 65 counts and sentenced to 315 years in prison.
Further investigation of Bostic’s computer led investigators to others in the group.
Assistant US attorney Steve DeBrota said the members met though a website and traded videos and still images by email.
“That ability to find a like-minded individual online that you couldn’t find in the real world is a severe danger that comes with the internet,” Mr DeBrota said.