Statewide child porn crackdown under way

Friday, April 8, 2011 10:45 AM
Last updated 10:47 AM
  • Follow Crime & courts

Richmond County authorities say they've issued six search warrants for child pornography this week, but any arrests could be weeks or months away.

Authorities are currently doing a forensic examination of the 11 computer and multiple SD and external hard drives seized in Operation Innocent Justice, according to Richmond County sheriff's Investigator Mark Dobbins.

The operation is part of a 5-month investigation by 27 local law enforcement agencies in 40 Georgia counties. Five federal agencies are also involved.

Dobbins said arrests could take some time in some counties where agencies were working to sort through numerous digital items including flash drives, laptops and cell phones confiscated from the homes and businesses where search warrants were issued.

"It is excessively detailed," Dobbins said. "It's a complicated formula and it takes a while to go into a computer and go through every image that's in there, as well as going into unallocated space, or what commoners call deleted space."

Authorities will then make the determination of whether there is enough probable cause or evidence to issue an arrest warrant. So far 63 arrests have been made as a result of the 117 search warrants issued across the state.

"Child pornography has increased exponentially" due to the digital age, Dobbins said.

In the 1970s, a producer of child porn had to have a black room to produce images to eliminate the third party, whereas now photos can be uploaded instantly by anyone.

The goal of the operation was to cut down on the supply and demand effect caused by the suspects who are searching for and downloading the pornography.

"Once they search for child pornography, the suppliers see that there is still a huge demand for it so they consistently do it," Dobbins said.

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jackragg
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jackragg 04/08/11 - 10:53 am
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Darkroom. Not black room.

Darkroom. Not black room.

TheWorldisRound
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TheWorldisRound 04/08/11 - 11:05 am
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Awful. People who produce

Awful. People who produce this should be put up aganist the wall.

Insider Information
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Insider Information 04/08/11 - 11:10 am
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It could be weeks or months

It could be weeks or months before arrests are made.....because law enforcement is busy doing more important work - cracking down on scalping master's badges.

We're lucky criminals aren't smart. If they were, they would realize this is the week to commit crime.

LogicalCausality
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LogicalCausality 04/08/11 - 12:21 pm
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It's not easy to explicitly

It's not easy to explicitly use child pornography as evidence to prosecute someone. Consider the fact that most of the people browsing AC have cookies forcefully stored without knowledge from websites they have never visited nor have any intention of visiting. Tracking data's history as it was used, moved, editied and/or published is very time consuming. Be reasonable.

Itsnotaclowncar
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Itsnotaclowncar 04/08/11 - 12:22 pm
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Funny, I have been working

Funny, I have been working all week and have had nothing to do with the Masters. Plus road patrol and regular units have been steady answering non masters related calls all week. Most of the law enforcement at the masters is off duty (earning extra money) or special squads that have been assigned to the area. I guess Augusta should listen more to you Insider and not have ANY special events that may take one deputy to staff. That would include Arts in the Heart of Augusta, Border Bash, First Friday, any performance at the Bell or James Brown etc... I dont know how places that hold major sporting events on a regular basis handle any crime at all.

If you read the article, it takes time to go through the computers, all the files etc... That has to be done by people who specialize in computer forensics. That means those computers have to be sent to state and federal agencies. Thats what is going to take a while. Its not dependent on the cop who is off duty working traffic detail or one of the vice guys who are targeting the scalpers.

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