A recent in-depth national media piece addressing the nature and scope of images depicting sexually exploited and abused children references a troubling fiction concerning them that is prevalent across the United States.
Namely, that is this: Many Americans believe that the egregious wrongs committed against the world’s most vulnerable demographic are confined mostly to areas far removed from the U.S.
Candidly, that view is grossly misinformed.
In fact, stresses a principal New Mexico investigator of child sex crimes, it is entirely off base and leads to tragic consequences. Anthony Maez, who is the special agent in charge of the state’s Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, stresses that images and videos showing child sexual abuse involve minors in the U.S. nearly 90% of the time.
That is a flatly stunning reality, and it underscores the pleas from Maez and other law enforcers encouraging the general public to immediately report any information they come across that links with child sexual abuse.
Sadly, culled evidence indicates that uncovering such subject matter is far from difficult. Heinous and unlawful images, videos and other linked matter is reportedly “hiding in plain sight in New Mexico.”
Relevant numbers sadly bear that out. Here are a couple:
- Over a mere three-month span recently, Facebook removed a shocking 11.6 million abuse-linked images from its portal
- Nearly 1,000 probes into abuse reports were conducted in New Mexico during a 10-month period last year
More than 275 agents in the state are reportedly battling online crime against children.
Given the statistics relevant to such activity, perhaps even more are needed.