October 23 (UPI) – Australian police have arrested nearly 50 people and rescued more than a dozen children as part of a wide-ranging abuse investigation, officials said Friday.
Federal Police said 44 men were arrested on charges of child abuse, and that at least 16 child victims were found and placed in safe places.
The men face more than 300 criminal charges, including possession of child exploitation material.
Police said the operation “discovered a network of offenders using a cloud storage platform to access and share child abuse material online.”
“The content accessed and shared is classified as some of the most disgusting ever created,” federal police the word in a statement.
Police said the Australian Center for Combating the Exploitation of Children was assisting with investigations with state and territory police.
“While this is a great outcome for law enforcement, catching offenders and bringing them to justice is only half the battle,” added the police. “Identifying victims is a race against time and [the] Victim identification teams are constantly rescuing children from sexual abuse.
“Pixel by pixel, our investigators painstakingly searched for clues and never gave up.”
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