More than 40 Australian men have been charged with possession of child abuse materials and sharing their materials online via a cloud storage platform.
The Federal Police announced on Friday that they had filed a total of 350 charges against 44 men in every Australian state and the ACT, with 16 children prevented from harm’s way.
Thousands of sex abusers around the world allegedly used the cloud storage site, with some suspected Australian abusers also creating their own abuse content.
“The material was classified as the most abhorrent produced,” AFP said in a statement.
Australian offenders are between the ages of 19 and 57.
The men were working in a number of professions, including manufacturing , transport, law enforcement and hospitality.
Australian Federal Police Commissioner Reece Kershaw praised the investigators for their hard work, saying the victim’s discovery was “a race against time.”
“Pixel by pixel, our investigators painstakingly look for clues and never give up, and the tools they use give Australian police access to world-leading expertise,” Mr Kershaw said.
“Children are not commodities and the AFP and its partner agencies work around the clock to identify and prosecute offenders.”
The AFP announced that more than 250,000 child abuse content files have been intercepted online in the past 12 months by its Australian Center for Child Counter Exploitation, while 134 children-including 67 in Australia-were removed from harm in the financial year 2019/20.