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Massive Child Porn Sting Rocks Switzerland

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Sep 17, 2004 1:37 PM PDT    Text size: 
BERN, Switzerland – In what police officials are calling one of the largest child porn raids since 2002, ten people have so far been arrested in Switzerland for their involvement with websites that allegedly distributed child porn. The raid was a coordinated effort among task force agents in more than 120 countries.

Police reportedly raided more than 400 homes throughout the country during the first week of September and the fallout from the investigation could carry on until the end of the year.

Police officials say they have uncovered more than 21 websites that featured substantial amounts of illegal child porn still shots and video footage.

Several of the people taken into custody are also suspected of sexually abusing children.

“This is a big operation... and very important," said Jürg Schäublin, a spokesman for the Federal Police Office. "We are confident that we are sending a signal that Switzerland does not tolerate child pornography."

Swiss Police officials are saying that the only comparable child porn investigation in size was conducted by child porn task force Operation Genesis.

The investigation was prompted by U.S. agents who supplied the Swiss police with a list of names of people associated with the 21 websites through their credit card numbers.

According to Schäublin, the arrests made in Switzerland have opened up a trail of likeminded investigations that have been traced to individuals in the dozens of other countries.

Swiss law states that anyone found guilty of downloading child pornography in Switzerland faces up to one year in prison and distribution of child porn carries a maximum three-year prison sentence.

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