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At least 70 people in the New York City area have been arrested recently following a probe into the anonymous exchange of child pornography.
The Associated Press reports that the five-week investigation, which was conducted by Immigration and Customs Enforcement, concluded last week. Overall, at least 70 men and one woman are expected to be charged in what law enforcement officials are calling one of the largest child pornography busts on a local level ever.
The investigation began in January after Mount Pleasant police chief Brian Fanelli was arrested on charges for possessing child pornography. The sweeping initiative resulted in the seizure of 600 computers, smartphones and tablet devices containing a staggering 175 terabytes of disturbing images.
The Associated Press added that the accused come from all walks of life:
Authorities say some of the defendants had access to young children, though there were no reports of abuse. The Boy Scout leader also coached a youth baseball team. The rabbi home-schooled his children and others. Another person had hidden cameras used to secretly film his children's friends.
Furthermore, two NYPD officers and a member of the NYFD were also caught in the scandal:
The NYPD officers were identified by sources as Sgt. Alberto Randazzo and Officer Yong Wu. The NYPD had no immediate response. Court papers also charge New York Fire Department paradmedic Aaron Young with viewing pornography involving children as young as 2 years old.
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