Top execs probed for child porn - report

2013-08-23 11:36
(Duncan Alfreds, News24)

(Duncan Alfreds, News24)

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Johannesburg - Police are investigating another 44 people with possible links to an international child pornography ring, and have obtained at least 30 search warrants so far, a spokesperson said on Friday.

"We did an investigation on 50 suspects... we then obtained 30 search warrants early in August," said Lieutenant General Solomon Makgale.

"We executed those warrants and that's how we arrested those six. The six are part of the 50."

Top executives

He could not confirm a report in The Times that among the alleged paedophiles were top executives of banks, insurance firms, legal practices, and IT companies.

A policeman with knowledge of the investigation told the newspaper that several of the suspects have links to high-profile companies and professional practices.

"They are not small fry. A few are said to be quite powerful," the source told The Times.

"There are a number of the suspects, married, with children and living so-called normal lives, who are being incredibly uncooperative," the officer added.

Arrests

Police had followed up on a tip-off from Interpol last Thursday and arrested six men in four provinces for possession of child porn.

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

They were a teacher, a retired school principal, a headmaster, a lawyer, a dermatologist, and a businessman.

Since the arrests, they had appeared in various South African courts separately and had their cases postponed.

Makgale said police were trying to obtain the remaining 20 search warrants.

On Wednesday, the newspaper reported the case had links to Canada, the United Kingdom, the United States, 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.

Read more on:    mbombela  |  johannesburg  |  child abuse  |  pornography
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