#childpredator | Cops snare 100 suspected paedophiles in just six months as part of online crackdown

Around 180 children have been protected as part of a Police Scotland crackdown on online child abuse.

They have arrested some 100 people for offences as a result of investigations into online child abuse in the last six months, cops said.

Officers from Police Scotland’s specialist internet investigation unit have prepared more than 350 national online child abuse prevention (NOCAP) probes since January.

The NOCAP “packages” provide intelligence and evidence for investigations to help identify online child abusers.

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Assistant Chief Constable Duncan Sloan, the major crime and public protection lead for the force, said: “Online child sexual abuse is a national threat with advancements in technology, online functions and platforms giving predators ever evolving opportunity to target children.

“Behind every downloaded image, every attempt to groom or to extort, is a child being victimised by a faceless predator.

“As today’s figures show, predators are not anonymous. Every action leaves a trace and we will work with our partners, nationally and internationally, to track you down.

“You will be caught and you risk losing everything.”

He added: “Tackling online child abuse is a priority. We draw on specialist resources from across our organisation to gather intelligence, to carry out digital forensic examinations and to support our investigations.

“We will continue to improve our response: investing resources, using the latest technologies and taking action to identify and apprehend those who pose a threat to our children.”

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Child protection charity NSPCC Scotland said: “These figures from Police Scotland confirm that the lockdown has put children at huge risk of sexual abuse online and it is likely to result in a long-term increase in threat.

“Throughout the coronavirus pandemic, many children and young people will have felt isolated and vulnerable, spending lots of time online, creating a ‘perfect storm’ in online risks to children in Scotland.

“It is imperative that online harm laws are brought in imminently so that tech companies are forced to make their platforms safe, so that children stop being groomed, sexually abused and exposed to harm on their sites on a daily basis.”




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