Home » CBI crackdown on crime related to online child sexual abuse and exploitation

CBI crackdown on crime related to online child sexual abuse and exploitation

by Raju Vernekar
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By Raju Vernekar
Mumbai, Nov 17:

In a nationwide coordinated crackdown on crime related to online child sexual abuse material, the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) registered 23 separate cases against 83 accused on the allegations related to online child sexual abuse and exploitation, on Sunday.
Similarly on Tuesday, CBI conducted searches at 77 locations across 14 states in the country. The locations included: Tirupati, Kanekal (Andhra Pradesh), Delhi, KonchJalaun, Mau, Chandauli, Varansi, Ghazipur, Siddharthanagar, Moradabad, Noida, Jhansi, Ghaziabad, Muzaffarnagar (Uttar Pradesh), Junagarh, Bhavnagar, Jamnagar (Gujarat),Sangroor, Malerkotla, Hoshiarpur, Patiala (Punjab), Patna, Siwan (Bihar), Yamuna Nagar, Panipat, Sirsa, Hisar (Haryana), Bhadrak, Jajapur, Dhenkanal (Odisha), Tiruvalure, Coimbatore, Namkkal, Salem, Tiruvannamalai (Tamil Nadu), Ajmer, Jaipur, Jhunjhunu, Nagaur (Rajasthan), Gwalior (Madhya Pradesh), Jalgaon, Salwad, Dhule (Maharashtra), Korba (Chhattisgarh) and Solan (Himachal Pradesh).
A number of electronic gadgets/mobiles/laptops etc. were recovered during searches. It was revealed that some individuals were involved in the trading of CSEM material, the CBI statement said.
The various syndicates of individuals based in different parts of India and foreign countries were indulging in circulating, storing and viewing Child Sexual Exploitation Material (CSEM) through various social media platforms/groups. Besides, some persons were disseminating CSEM by way of sharing links, videos, pictures, texts, posts and hosting of such content on social media groups/platforms and third-party storage/hosting platforms, the CBI stated.
As per the initial information, there over 50 groups having more than 5000 offenders sharing child sexual abuse material. Many of these groups also have the involvement of foreign nationals. It is initially learnt that there may be involvement of nationals of around 100 countries spread across various continents. CBI is coordinating with sister agencies through formal and informal channels. Searches and development of further leads are underway. 
Globally, the importance of recognizing and combating online child sexual abuse has been acknowledged. Every year, a lot of children face abuse which becomes more horrific when online platforms are used. It is a challenge for all stakeholders including law enforcement agencies. Cooperation amongst law enforcement agencies is paramount for tackling this menace.
CBI as a National Central Bureau (Interpol-India) is uniquely placed to coordinate such matters having national and international ramifications. A Special Unit “Online Child Sexual Abuse and Exploitation Prevention/ Investigation (OCSAE)” was created in CBI for matters pertaining to online child sexual abuse and exploitation. Apart from coordination with various agencies, the unit is undertaking the investigation of various offences relating to online child sexual abuse and exploitation, the CBI statement said.

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