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CBI To Seek Help From 100 Foreign Countries To Combat Online Child Sexual Abuse

NEW DELHI: This Children’s Day(November 14), the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) lodged 23 cases against 83 accused on claims of online child sexual abuse and exploitation as part of a statewide coordinated crackdown on criminality related to internet child sexual abuse material.

It was found various syndicates of individuals based in various areas of India and foreign nations were accused of spreading, storing, and viewing Child Sexual Exploitation Material (CSEM) via various social media platforms/groups.

It was also claimed that people were propagating CSEM via sharing links, videos, photographs, texts, and postings, as well as hosting such content on social media groups/platforms and third-party storage/hosting platforms.

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So far, a lot of electronic devices/mobile phones/laptops, etc., have been recovered during searches. It has been found that some people were involved in the trading of CSEM material.

According to preliminary data, there are more than 50 groups with over 5000 offenders sharing child sexual assault material. Many of these organisations are also made up of foreign nationals. It has been learned that nationals from around 100 nations spread across many continents may be involved. Through formal and informal means, the CBI coordinates with sister agencies. Searches and the creation of new leads are currently underway.

Today, searches are being undertaken at the premises of the accused at 77 places across 14 states in the country, including 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)

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The significance of recognising and preventing online child sexual abuse has been recognised globally. Every year, a large number of youngsters are subjected to abuse, which becomes even more heinous when online platforms are employed. It is a difficult task for all stakeholders, including law enforcement. Cooperation among law enforcement authorities is critical in combating this threat.

The CBI, as a National Central Bureau (Interpol-India), is well positioned to coordinate such national and international issues. CBI established a Special Unit “Online Child Sexual Abuse and Exploitation Prevention/Investigation (OCSAE)” to handle cases involving online child sexual abuse and exploitation.

Aside from coordinating with other agencies, the team is investigating numerous offences involving internet child sexual abuse and exploitation.

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