Alleged child porn kingpin’s case postponed

The 53-year-old Grahamstown man is the alleged mastermind behind an international child porn syndicate.

FILE: An alleged mastermind behind an international child pornography ring will be back in the dock on 26 May. Picture: Sxc.hu

CAPE TOWN - An alleged mastermind behind an international child pornography ring will be back in the dock on 26 May.

The 53-year-old Grahamstown man appeared in the Cape Town Magistrates Court on Wednesday.

He faces charges relating to the possession and manufacturing of child porn.

It's alleged the Grahamstown man posed as a 16-year-old on internet chat rooms in order to track hundreds of children across the world into engaging into sexually explicit activities.

The arrest came after South African Police Service (Saps) joined forces with the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and Belgian authorities in a crackdown on child pornography.

Six other men have been implicated in the US.

The FBI is also preparing an application for his extradition because American children were also allegedly exploited.

During his last court appearance, the man was released on R5,000 bail.

According to the police's Heila Niemand, the syndicate allegedly lured about 600 children all over the world to the site.

"They got the children to engage in explicit sexual activities, they recorded them on web camera without telling them they were being recorded and that they would use the videos; then distributed them through this website."

OTHER ARRESTS

  • A 33-year-old man and 22-year-old woman were arrested in their Port Elizabeth home for being in possession of and distributing child pornography.

  • A 37-year-old engineer from Plettenberg Bay also appeared in court last week for his connection to the syndicate.

His case was postponed to 12 May for a regional court date.

_LISTEN: _ A Belgian officer speaks to 567 Cape Talk's John Maytham.