An online network of child predators allegedly involved in sharing child exploitation material has been exposed. There have been 20 arrests this week, one of which was in the ACT.
The investigation, codenamed “Operation Conqueror”, began in January this year when the AFP identified a number of individuals using a peer-to-peer file sharing network with images depicting children of various ages being sexually abused.
As part of the operation, the AFP executed a total of 36 search warrants in every state and territory in Australia during an intense period of action, where hundreds of thousands of images and videos depicting online child sexual exploitation were seized.
Offences range from producing, accessing, transmitting and making available child exploitation material, contrary to the provisions of section 474 of the Criminal Code Act 1995. These offences carry sentences of up to 15 years imprisonment. Possession charges relevant to applicable state legislation were also laid.