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09 May 2003

FBI Reports on Global Investigation of Internet Pedophiles

(Operation spearheaded by UK's National High Tech Crime Unit) (550)

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) on May 8 announced its
participation in the global investigation into a pedophile ring known
as "The Brotherhood" that operates over the Internet.

The operation was called "Operation Twins" and was led by the United
Kingdom's National High Tech Crime Unit (NHTCU), with the cooperation
of Europol, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP), and the police
forces of Norway and Germany. The FBI said that so far, 60 people in
11 countries have been arrested and charged in relation to their
participation in the network.

These results "illustrate an excellent example of how international
law enforcement works in partnership, across multi-geographical
jurisdictions, to identify and bring to justice those responsible for
and engaged in serious sexual abuse of children," said British
Detective Superintendent Mick Deats.

Following is an FBI press release:

(begin text)

U.S. Department of Justice
Federal Bureau of Investigation
Washington, D.C.
May 8, 2003

SOPHISTICATED PEDOPHILE NETWORK TARGETED IN INTERNATIONAL DAY OF
ACTION

The FBI today announced its participation in "Operation Twins," an
international investigation into a sophisticated and organized
web-based pedophile ring operating on the internet. Led by the United
Kingdom's National High Tech Crime Unit (NHTCU), "Operation Twins" was
conducted with the full support and cooperation of the FBI, Europol,
the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP), Norway Police, and the
German Police (BKA).

Beginning in 2001, the NHTCU, working with the FBI, spearheaded the
international operation to target and dismantle this major pedophile
network and community called "The Brotherhood."

To date, 60 people in 11 countries have been arrested and charged in
relation to their participation in this pedophile network. Among those
arrested were bulletin board owners, systems administrators, and those
who monitored the bulletin boards and provided sophisticated technical
and security advice to members, including information on how to avoid
detection by law enforcement. The FBI's involvement resulted in one
arrest and eight searches in eight states. Overall, nine FBI Field
Offices participated in "Operation Twins." Investigative efforts are
ongoing.

"Operation Twins demonstrates a strong international law enforcement
commitment of working together to protect children from sexual
predators," said Jana Monroe, Assistant Director of the FBI's Cyber
Division. "This operation should serve as a stern warning for those
who prey on our children. We will work diligently, with the help of
our law enforcement partners around the world if necessary, to
investigate e-groups, bulletin boards, and other mediums that foster
the exploitation of our children."

"This operation has exposed the complex, sophisticated and organized
hierarchical structure that on-line child abuse groups use to protect
themselves," said Detective Superintendent Mick Deats, Deputy Head of
the NHTCU.

"To date we have identified and taken action on more than 60 people
who are members of The Brotherhood and associated bulletin boards.
Today's results illustrate an excellent example of how international
law enforcement works in partnership, across multi-geographical
jurisdictions, to identify and bring to justice those responsible for
and engaged in serious sexual abuse of children."

The FBI would particularly like to thank those at NHTCU who have
greatly assisted the FBI in bringing this phase of the operation to a
successful conclusion.

(end text)

(Distributed by the Office of International Information Programs, U.S.
Department of State. Web site: http://usinfo.state.gov)