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Operation Hamlet

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Operation Hamlet

Post  Guest on Wed 14 Apr - 9:33

Named after this Danish Shakespearian prince, the “Hamlet operation” was done in August 2002 simultaneously in Belgium, Holland, Switzerland, Germany, Great Britain, Denmark and the United States. Ten months earlier in Denmark, Dr Lloyd Alan Emmerson, a 45-years-old Danish chiropractor, was exchanging photographs of his 9 years-old daughter. Twenty-five members of an Internet criminal organisation called “Fun Club” were arrested, mainly fathers photographed or filmed with web-cams, as they abused their daughters, aged between 2 to 14 years. Dr Emmerson had a half million pédo- pornographic photographs and films. He pled not guilty, but was condemned to 30 years of prison.

Dr Lloyd Alan Emmerson

The Belgian branch was judged in such discretion that no one was informed. Sixty-five children were supposed to have been rescued when in 2006, the Austrian postal police intercepted several video clips of paedophile pornography. An autistic little girl was raped by a man she called "Daddy" in the Flemish slang of Bruges. Her younger sister was "playing model", dressed in erotic lingerie. Interpol immediately identified Pascal Taveirne in the "Hamlet" files. Belgian law guarantees that an ascendant guilty of the rape of a child of less than ten years-old is sentenced of a minimum 17 years prison. It has obviously not been applied for Pascal Taveirn. His daughters did not get any protection measures, whereas one is autistic and all autistic children believe to have been confronted to death when they were babies, according to Bruno Bettelheim. They were four and five years old when the "Fun Club" was discovered. They were nine and ten on Operation Video Child day.

The criminal was arrested in full discretion. He had contacted by Internet Sergio Marzola {photo}, an Italian man living in Ferrare, webmaster and producer of child pornography, who gave him an appointment in a hotel of Bruges. He had been paid 250 euros to let his daughters filmed dressed in paedophile lingerie, 500 euro to film them naked and 750 euro for him to rape one of them. The Italian authorities and the paedophile network were informed on the spot. Sergio Marzola hastened to organize his emigration to his second residence Ukraine. The Italian police let him do under high supervision and phone-tapping, which had the advantage of being able to surprise him with his "bare essential", all packed up and intended to be sent on the first aircraft to Kiev:

+ A wardrobe of 500 erotic clothing for children;
+ Hundreds of child pornography DVDs;
+ An important computer and video equipment;
+ An archive of 30.000 electronic letters;
+ And 100.000 euro hidden into two loudspeakers.

He was arrested, suitcases in hands, this 11 August 2006. Suspected be the manager of approximately 30 Internet sites intended for the exchange of child pornography, Sergio Marzola earned from two to four hundred euro per transaction, for the modest monthly investment six hundred euro: a Web space at that cost, able to stand an important traffic.

The information, completely censored in Belgium, has arrived from Italy where people have been outraged of what has happened to the Belgian little girls, without Belgian people not knowing anything of what has happened. According to the Italian press: Sergio Marzola's bare essentialTaveirne has explained that the last film had provided him in five hours more money that he could earn in two weeks work; his wife explained that the pédo- pornographic lingerie was similar to summer clothes and the little girls are both severely handicapped.

Belgium's behaviour is explained by the fact that, according to its authorities, the country would be the only one in the world where paedophile networks do not pass: there are just isolated predators who share "private collections" of child pornography with other isolated predators. There is one chance out of two that among the half million photographs of Dr Emmerson they are some of Zandvoort file, the connection making business being attached to the majority of the European rings. It not a "sufficient element" to order an inquiry in Belgium, as Zandvoort acts of an "individual" file, according to the minister of justice... with 90.081 victims!


Remarks of U.S. Customs Commissioner Robert C. Bonner: Press Conference on Operation Hamlet


Thank you all for coming.

And thanks especially to John Rabun, the Vice President and Chief of Operations for the Center for Missing and Exploited Children, for joining me here this morning.

I would also like to recognize Kathy McClure, the Deputy Chief of the Department of Justice's Child Exploitation and Obscenity section, and Ruben Rodriguez, the Director of the Exploited Child Unit at the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children who are with us here as well.

Following my remarks, I will invite John to make some brief comments, and then we'll answer your questions. After that, Special Agent Mike Netherland will provide you with a short briefing on the details of the case.

Today, we are announcing the results to date of an investigation called Operation Hamlet.

This is a difficult case to announce, because I have rarely seen crimes as despicable and repugnant as those involved in this case.

Operation Hamlet is a 10-month investigation conducted by Special Agents of the U.S. Customs Service, in conjunction with the Danish National Police, the Department of Justice and U.S. Attorneys in Eastern and Southern Districts of California and law enforcement officers in six (6) European countries and eleven (11) different states.

Operation Hamlet uncovered a ring of pedophiles who sexually abused and exploited at least 45 children, ranging in age from 2 to 14 years old. 37 of these children are American citizens residing in the United States. Fifteen (15) members of the ring were charged in an indictment unsealed this morning in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of California. They all were charged with Conspiracy to Sexually Exploit Children, Sexual Exploitation of Children, and Receiving and Distributing Material Involving the Sexual Exploitation of Minors.

What is particularly disturbing about this case is that the majority of the people who have been charged, were actually the parents of and in many instances were sexually exploiting their own children. In many instances, parents forced their children to pose in sexually explicit ways and to commit sex acts, that were photographed and then posted on the Internet.

With the power of the Internet, what may have once been an isolated local crime, quickly became a global crime.

This case began in November 2001, when a group called "Save the Children" discovered images on the Internet depicting a child, apparently in Denmark, being sexually abused. They immediately notified the Danish National Police. The Danish police investigated the report and arrested a Danish citizen for molesting the child whose image he had posted on the Internet-the child was his 9-year old daughter.

On his computer, the Danish Police discovered a web of pedophiles throughout the world, many of whom were in the United States.

In late January of this year, the U.S. Customs Cybersmuggling Center received its first leads in this case from the Danish government, and opened the investigation that we called "Operation Hamlet". This led to search warrants and arrests of 10 individuals in the United States, in California, Florida, Texas, Idaho, New York, New Jersey, South Carolina and Michigan and Washington State. And 10 individuals have been arrested in Europe - in Denmark, Netherlands, Belgium, Switzerland, Germany, and the U.K.

The 20 arrests and the charges all relate to using and sexually abusing and exploiting children, often their own children and then, to compound the crime, publishing the photos - the visual depictions of their crimes on the Internet and circulating these images among themselves, as part of a pedophile ring. According to the allegations of the indictment, the individuals indicted today for conspiracy to sexually exploit children, in violation of federal law, circulated these child pornographic images between and among themselves, e-mailed each other as to images they wanted to see, and in at least one case, exchanged children to be sexually abused and depicted.

Special Agent Netherland will be available to provide more of the specifics of the investigation a little later. I would like to comment about the investigation of these crimes that has led to the indictment unsealed this morning in California.

Throughout this summer, we have all been repeatedly shocked at the rash of abductions, molestations and murders of innocent children. It cannot be repeated enough, and bears repeating again, that America's most precious asset is its children. Our children must be protected at any cost.

At the root of many child abductions, child murders and child sexual molestations is a twisted desire for sex with children. This desire of pedophiles is fueled by child pornography, which today - unfortunately -- is more available than ever through the Internet.

By aggressively pursuing pedophiles through their efforts to obtain child pornography on the Internet, we can identify child molesters as agents did in this investigation.

In Operation Hamlet, dozens of children were molested and their images posted on the Internet. In this case, the normal safe harbor for many of these children -- their parents -- turned out to be their chamber of horrors.

Instead of protecting their children, these parents instead exploited them in the worst possible way.

We depend on the natural instincts of parents to protect their children from being abducted, from being exploited, and from being exposed to pedophiles. But when the parents are the abusers, then the government must step in with all its might.

With their images now distributed on the Internet, the 45 children who suffered abuse at the hands of those charged in this case will continue to suffer. Their images will be on the Internet for years and years to come -- passed from pedophile to pedophile. This is a crime that never ends.

Just recently, in fact, U.S. Customs agents found some of the images distributed by Operation Hamlet conspirators turn up in the course of another investigation.

I have seen some horrendous crimes in my time, but these crimes are beyond the pale. These crimes are despicable and repulsive.

People who engage in these kinds of despicable acts -- sexually exploiting children -- especially their own children -- should be removed from their children forever and incarcerated for as long as the law allows.

I applaud President Bush's call for a White House Conference next month on crimes against children. It is critically important to address this issue head on, and to do it now, before any other children are harmed.

I want to commend the efforts of law enforcement in this case, the Danish National Police, in particular.

U.S. Customs worked with other federal agencies, the Postal Inspection Service, and the FBI in this case.

The case involved arrests and search warrants in 10 states and we received valuable assistance from state and local law enforcement, including the Cloris, California Police Department; West Palm Beach Police Department, and Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force in San Diego.

The assistance of the Department of Justice Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section (Kathy McClure) and the U.S. Attorney's Office in the Eastern District of California in the prosecution effort have been invaluable.

I also applaud the work of the Center for Missing and Exploited Children, as they create and encourage networks, like the Amber Network, to find abducted children quickly, before any serious harm can come to them at the hands of predators. Together we must find ways to both protect the children of our nation -- children of all nations -- and to starve pedophiles of the sordid images that induce them to act. The assistance of Michelle Collins to Operation Hamlet has been outstanding.

At this time I would like to invite John Rabun, the Vice President and Director of Operations for the Center for Missing and Exploited Children to make a few remarks.


Web child porn ring broken - International ring included parents abusing own children

August 10, 2002

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- A joint European-U.S. investigation has broken an international pedophile ring that included parents who sexually abused their own children and distributed images of children as young as 2 years old over the Internet, the U.S. Customs Service announced Friday.

"I've rarely seen crimes as despicable and repugnant," said U.S. Customs Service Commissioner Robert Bonner. "These crimes are beyond the pale."

The investigation was called Operation Hamlet, a 10-month probe that included the Customs Service, Danish national police, the Justice Department and U.S. attorney's offices around the United States.

The ring abused and exploited at least 45 children, 37 of whom are citizens and residents of the United States, officials said. The ages of the 37 children range from 2 to 14.

Fifteen members of the ring were charged in an indictment in U.S. District Court in the Eastern District of California unsealed Friday. According to the indictment, all 15 were charged with conspiracy, two with sexual exploitation and one with receiving and distributing materials involving sexual exploitation of minors.

Each charge carries a maximum sentence of 20 years. The potential sentences for some of the defendants, if they are convicted, could be as high as 60 years.

Nine of the people were Americans and the other six were Europeans. The investigation is continuing. The 15 are from California, Texas, Idaho, Florida, Washington state, South Carolina, Kansas, Denmark, Switzerland, and the Netherlands, according to the indictment.

The case began in November, when images on the Internet of a sexually abused child in Denmark were seen by Save the Children, an international child development and relief organization.

The organization notified Danish police, who arrested a Danish man for molesting a child whose image he posted on the Internet. The child was his 9-year-old daughter, officials said.

On his computer, police discovered a network of pedophiles, many in the United States.

In January, the Customs Service received leads from Danish police and that led to search warrants and arrests.

A child counselor, a photographer and in one case members of the ring exchanged pictures of children

Defendants engaged in chat sessions on the Internet to discuss production and transmission of the pictures of children engaged in sexually explicit conduct.

In one instance, a defendant requested a recording of a child so he could hear the child crying while being spanked and abused.


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