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01st Jun 2017

A bag, wallpaper, or shampoo: the objects that can help find child abusers

Gillian Fitzpatrick

The Trace An Object campaign to stop child abuse has now been launched by Europe’s police agency.

A website is up and running – and posted on it are everyday items that might lead law enforcement authorities to both victims and perpetrators.

A logo on a bag, wallpaper or a shampoo bottle may be enough to identify someone – and police can be alerted via an anonymous tip-off or social media.

Europol has uploaded some 20 objects on the site, and all the images are from active albeit unsolved cases involving minors.

The website states: “The most innocent clues can sometimes help crack a case. The objects are all taken from the background of an image with sexually explicit material involving minors.”

It adds: “We are convinced that more eyes will lead to more leads and will ultimately help to save these children.”

Europol Executive Director Rob Wainwright also said: “This innovative project seeks to use the global reach of the internet to allow the public to contribute to this investigation process and to play a real part in the global prevention of child abuse.”