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    Major Child Exploitation Ring Dismantled in Nationwide Operation “Dakota”

    The Central Bureau of Cybercrime (CBZC) of Poland has made a significant stride in the fight against child exploitation, arresting 66 individuals across the country. This operation, dubbed “Dakota,” involved 359 officers and was conducted last week, targeting perpetrators of sexual crimes against minors.

    During the operation, police conducted 103 searches, uncovering over 166,000 files of illegal content and seizing approximately 1,280 data storage devices, including computers and mobile phones. The suspects, ranging in age from 19 to 72, face criminal charges for possession, distribution, and production of child sexual exploitation materials.

    The CBZC’s collaboration with international agencies such as the FBI and Britain’s National Crime Agency was crucial in apprehending several notable suspects. This included a man producing abusive materials featuring his young daughter and another who produced similar content involving children closely related to him. Another individual was discovered installing cameras in bathrooms under the guise of conducting home renovations, enabling him to record minors secretly.

    Additionally, one offender exploited social media platforms to contact and blackmail underage girls into sending obscene materials by masquerading as a woman.

    Of those arrested, 25 have been temporarily detained following court decisions, reflecting the gravity of their offenses. The operation was closely coordinated with the Department of Cybercrime at the National Prosecutor’s Office and involved meticulous analytical and operational efforts.

    This marks the fourth such operation by the Bureau, which has led to the arrest of 223 individuals and the seizure of nearly 700,000 illegal files to date. Following the operation, investigators are now faced with the daunting task of sifting through hundreds of thousands of distressing files to prepare for further prosecutions.

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