When Australian police uncovered an international child sex syndicate a few months ago, they were not happy with just arresting the chief suspect.
They wanted to root out all the other main administrators running the online ring peddling pictures of sexually abused children.
So the Queensland police decided to continue operating the online ring in an elaborate ring to identify the others involved.
Australian Broadcasting Corporation (abc.net.au) reported today that the 10-month operation led to the arrests of scores of members in Australia and around the world.
The report stated that the investigators probably saved “potentially hundreds” of children who were being abused.
The Queensland’s anti-paedophile task force Argos targeted an Internet bulletin board which had 45,000 members, the report added.
It said the board was hosted on the part of the Internet known as the “dark net”, which uses encryption software to hide identities and mask people’s browsing history.
Court records show the site was administered by Adelaide childcare worker Shannon McCoole.
This month, the employee was sentenced to 35 years in jail for sexually abusing at least seven children in his care and for transmitting child pornography on the Internet.
ABC reported that McCoole’s victims were in state care, and were as young as 18 months old and the oldest was three.