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FBI ran website sharing thousands of child porn images

WASHINGTON — For nearly two weeks last year, the FBI operated what it described as one of the Internet’s largest child pornography websites, allowing users to download thousands of illicit images and videos from a government site in the Washington suburbs.

The operation — whose details remain largely secret — was at least the third time in recent years that FBI agents took control of a child pornography site but left it online in an attempt to catch users who officials said would otherwise remain hidden behind an encrypted and anonymous computer network. In each case, the FBI infected the sites with software that punctured that security, allowing agents to identify hundreds of users. Full Article

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  1. Harry

    I have 5 bucks that some of these FBI agents are viewing these images of naked kids.

  2. Stephen

    You can bet these same images are now being shared all over the world.
    A lot of people will never read the media article, help them out by posting it everywhere.

  3. G4Change

    Our government is EVIL!

  4. ab

    Haha, that’s hilarious and predictable. If only the public knew how far any government pursuing such efforts is willing to go. Basically during some operations the self proclaimed good guy actually does worse than the bad guy.

    • TiredOfHiding

      You said it! The public is so manipulated and deceived by the government that their collective heads would explode if they knew even a fraction of the truth of what goes on behind scenes.

      As citizens who got caught up this clusterfu*k by whatever means we ALL know first hand how dysfunctional and ridiculous the entire mess is.

      I am disgusted beyond words and for me that is a rare thing!
      This is just an insult to real victims and nothing more needs be said.

  5. Kevin

    Owning and distributing child pornography is illegal. Is law enforcement allowed to commit felonies to make arrests? Or is it that they are immune from prosecution because they were serving a legitimate law enforcement purpose?

    • David Kennerly

      It is illegal. Given the (dubious) claim in U.S. statutes that the distribution of images harms children, then they have just ‘harmed children’.

      The difference between citizens and cops, of course, is that they will get away with it. Prosecutors will refuse to prosecute them.

      • Harry

        If, one follow the logic these children are harm, regardless who sending it out. cop or otherwise.

  6. Q

    They were creating crime. not fighting crime.

    • Q

      “Officials acknowledged those risks, but said they had no other way to identify the people accessing the sites.”

      Why are these agents so hell bent on prosecuting people that they would allow these images to be downloaded, thus losing control of these images where they may be re-posted to other parts of the web? Would it not be more wise to just remove the site and remove the problem from the web once and for all? If the site is taken down and removed no one would be able to access this material it wouldn’t be downloaded and redistributed.

      I personally think they do this for job security and for funding. These agent’s are no better than those they call monsters. I still fail to see how a child is harmed each time someone views an image. How does this misguided logic explain this as true after the child becomes an adult or passes away? How is this possible when the person is not even aware someone viewed an image of them? Just because these agents with their own agenda say this is true doesn’t mean it’s true.

      • ab

        You forgot the part where the government is forced by law to tell a person they labeled a child pornography victim that their images and/or videos have been possessed, received or distributed by a new individual. That’s of course if the “victim” is known or can be found. It matters not where in the world a victim may live, they will be mailed a notification letter if possible from the United States government. So if someone doesn’t know the U.S. government will tell them because its required under federal law.

        Here are all the problems with this:

        1. There might or might not be a way for a victim to request not to be contacted again. If there’s not then that means regardless of them moving on they will not ever escape being reminded of their past. If there is I can’t imagine the process is simple or even allowed under all circumstances. There could be an argument made that in certain instances this fact promotes continued restitution requests years later. At some point it becomes a legalized version of extortion.

        2. Despite local laws and social norms if a conflict exists between these and US laws and norms, the non US norms and laws can’t ever be validated in the United States. So something is totally legally outside the United States even in a photo or video. In the United States nothing exists to turn a labeled victim into a non victim because where the content was created nothing illegal is being depicted.

        3. In the USA its just as bad. If the government says something is child pornography and the person depicted is a victim arguing the opposite is difficult. Even if the person doing the argument is the victim and or content creator (who could be the same person).

        By the way I agree; the logic used doesn’t hold up to basic common sense analysis.

  7. Patience

    Janice, would like to chime in on this. Many lives have been affected by this action. Children and adults. I can understand setting up drug stings. No one is harmed in that kind of operation. But by the government’s own definition, they have clearly broken it. How can my possession of 20 images compare to the government viewing posting of thousands. Who harmed the victims of this crime more. I at least take responsibility for my actions.They hide behind their warped explanation of ” attempting to stop the illegal activity of people actually posting”. I wonder how many of these agents felt as guilty viewing these images as the rest of us do. These stinks of an out of control government that thinks whatever it does is justified. Our taxes paid for this action, too! Our government should now be denied entry into all the countries that they have now betrayed.

  8. David

    I’m confused about the “re-harm” notion. Let’s assume there are some pics of me (from way far back in time) as a baby, nude on a bearskin rug. If someone is looking at those photos and getting his (or her) jollies: 1. I dont know it and, frankly, don’t care, and; 2. if I’m not even aware of it, is it harmimg me? Seriously, I think our “justice” system has gone bats-in-the-bellfree crazy.

  9. David

    What if someone gets his/her thrills looking at Donatello’s statue of “David”? Shall we go back nearly 600 years to the statue’s creation to try to find and compensate the model?

  10. Timmr

    I think you might find that some in law enforcement are selling this stuff, as many a revenuer did to confiscated booze during prohibition. Greed is a more powerful, if not the most powerful, criminal motivator than sex.

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