• Tue
  • Sep 23, 2014
  • Updated: 11:03pm
NewsHong Kong
CRIME

Sting nets 10 arrests for child porn pictures

Undercover operation tracks down schoolboys who sold sex to men, and adults who lured youngsters into posing for nude photographs

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 14 May, 2013, 12:00am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 14 May, 2013, 5:05am
 

Police arrested 10 people and seized about 100 pornographic photographs of children in a series of raids in the past two days.

The raids were the culmination of a three-month undercover operation.

The 10 included four schoolboys who were accused of using private photo-taking sessions as a cover for selling sex to men.

The six men were suspected of posing as amateur photographers and advertising through the internet for young models, especially young girls, to participate in photo shoots then forcing them into sex.

Schoolboys offered themselves as young models to solicit clients through online forums that discussed private photo shoots. They charged their customers between HK$500 and HK$1,200 for sex

"An initial investigation showed the schoolboys offered themselves as young models to solicit clients through online forums that discussed private photo shoots," a police investigator said. "They charged their customers between HK$500 and HK$1,200 for sex."

The four boys, aged 16 to 18, were identified after a policeman posed as an amateur photographer to look for young models through the internet.

Some of the men accused of preying on girls were identified after a policewoman posing as a model collected evidence.

After an initial meeting in an MTR station or a fast-food restaurant, young models were taken to love hotels where they were asked to pose naked, in swimsuits or clothed. Female models were understood to have been paid HK$2,000 an hour for posing naked, HK$500 for wearing swimsuits and HK$200 for photographs with clothes.

"They were then offered cash rewards for sex. If they refused, the photographers threatened to post their obscene or naked photos online," Chief Inspector Law Kwok-hoi, of New Territories North regional crime unit, said.

He said the six men, aged 21 to 39, included a bank manager, a salesman and some unemployed people.

Senior Superintendent Terry Wong Kin-wah, who heads the New Territories North crime unit, said there was no evidence to suggest that the suspects worked together or that they were part of a syndicate. He said more arrests were possible.

The two undercover agents were deployed in February in a three-month operation aimed at combating child pornography and related crimes.

The 10 suspects were picked up when police raided 14 residential units yesterday and on Sunday. They are accused of various offences such as possession of child pornography and soliciting for immoral purposes.

During the operation, police seized computers, smartphones and storage devices.

Initial forensic examination indicated that the seized devices contained about 800 pornographic and obscene photographs of males and females.

Police said about 100 of these photos involved child pornography and showed photographs of 10 under-age boys and girls. Last night, officers were still trying to locate the victims.

The suspects have been released on bail pending further investigation.

 

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