Brazil police break up global child-porn ring

By Stan Lehman ,AP

SAO PAULO — Brazilian police said Thursday they have broken up a ring that used Internet file sharing to distribute child pornography in at least 34 countries.

Inspector Diana Calazans Mann told reporters the files exchanged by members of the group were “very repugnant.” She said there were images of “infants, children and teenagers being sexually abused.”

“We were extremely shocked with the images,” she added. “I have never seen anything as bad.”

Another officer, who spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to the press, said 15 arrest warrants had been issued in Brazil and that at least 12 people had been arrested.

Those arrested could be charged with production and distribution of pornographic images of children and teenagers, the officer said, and face the possibility of as much as six years in jail.

He also said investigators also found “accounts written by members of the ring describing acts of cannibalism, as well as the rape of children by their parents, kidnaps and murders.” He said police “are trying to determine if they describe actual events or are the fruit of the imaginations of those who wrote them and posted them on their internet chat accounts.”

Police said in an earlier statement that users were located in 34 countries including the United States, Canada, Saudi Arabia, Britain and Venezuela.

Interpol, the international police organization, has been notified so that “investigations can get under way in those countries and those involved in the ring be identified,” the statement said.