High School Porn Ring Leads to Internet Safety Classes

High School Porn Ring Leads to Internet Safety Classes
Stephen Yagielowicz
BUFFALO, N.Y. – State Sen. Dale Volker wants to expand educational efforts and increase penalties in the fight against illegal child pornography, and will hold hearings this month in an attempt to see both become reality.

Responding to a recent series in the Buffalo News, entitled, "The Child Porn Pipeline," lawmakers are determined to grapple with the problem of illegal imagery depicting the sexual abuse of children and the difficulties that law enforcement faces in dealing with it.

The call for increased educational efforts results in part from a recent case in Syracuse, N.Y., where a 17-year-old student was charged with endangering the welfare of a child and disseminating indecent materials to minors, as part of a school “porn ring” where DVDs that featured nude photos of nine local girls from 11-14 years old were being sold for $5 each.

The images soon became available on the Internet, at which point authorities from the Onondaga County District Attorney's Office began to investigate.

“Once images are out there, they're out there forever,” Assistant District Attorney Gary Dawson said. “When kids are in college or having kids of their own, images could be popping up on the Internet.”

According to Dawson, some of the photos were taken by the girls themselves and then sent to their boyfriends, who passed them along to friends.

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