Cops given more time to investigate child porn case

2013-09-13 22:39
(Picture: Sapa)

(Picture: Sapa)

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Johannesburg - The case against one of six men accused of being members of an alleged child porn syndicate has been postponed in the Roodepoort Magistrate's Court.

Criminal court clerk Violet Ligunya said on Friday Andries Johannes Venter, 46, had appeared briefly on Thursday.

The matter was postponed to 3 December for police to be given more time to investigate.

In August, the other members, including two teachers and a retired school principal, appeared in various South African courts.

Police were following a tip-off from Interpol on 15 August when it arrested the six men in four provinces for possession of child pornography.

The accused were arrested in Lichtenburg, Bloemfontein, White River, Douglasdale, Florida, and Potchefstroom.

A lawyer, a dermatologist, and a businessman were also among the six.

"They are all suspected to have been involved in an international child pornography syndicate," police spokesperson Solomon Makgale said.

Their cases were postponed in court and they would appear separately on different dates in the next two months.

International syndicate

Makgale said police were investigating whether the six were involved in distribution and manufacturing child pornography, and if they were linked to an international syndicate.

Police raided several homes in various provinces in August.

Among the items seized were 672 DVDs, 22 memory sticks, eight laptops, two computer tablets, 39 external hard drives, and 25 books containing child porn pictures.

The Times newspaper reported the case had links to Canada, the UK, the US, western Europe and Australasia.

It reported that children as young as 5 were believed to have been groomed to have sex with each other and adults.

The images were believed to have been generated overseas, and police - with the help of their international counterparts - were investigating whether children from South Africa were involved.

Police overseas were also investigating whether any of the children were murdered.

Read more on:    police  |  johannesburg  |  child abuse
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