The Global Fight Against Child Exploitation
Key partners in the global battle against child exploitation gathered today at a meeting hosted by the Department of Justice. Representatives from the United Kingdom, Australia met with officials from the Departments of Justice and Homeland Security, as well as representatives from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. An official from Canada participated in the meeting by phone.
Child exploitation is an international problem that requires global collaboration and cooperation. The U.S. is a member of the Virtual Global Task Force (VGT), which is made up of law enforcement agencies from around the world who work together to fight child abuse online. The aim of the VGT is to build an effective, international partnership of law enforcement agencies to help to protect children from online child abuse. The U.S. representative on the VGT is the Department of Homeland Security.
Child pornography is a serious problem – one of the most serious facing the world’s law enforcement today – and growing threat. The Internet has made it easier than ever to traffic child pornography between nations and across borders. Images depicting the sexual assault of American children can now be found on computers not only at home but abroad; the same is true for foreign children.
The Department of Justice is strongly committed to working with its international allies to solve this problem – to prevent the abuse of children and stop the spread of these kinds of vile images. As part of our new National Strategy for Child Exploitation Prevention and Interdiction, the Department will be renewing its commitment to cooperation with its international allies in hopes of finding new, innovative and technology-based – solutions to this scourge.
The meeting was attended by Neil Gaughan, Assistant Commissioner of the Australian Federal Police and Chair of the Virtual Global Task Force; Jim Gamble, Chief Executive of the UK’s Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre, Sunny Parmar, Canadian Police Centre for Missing and Exploited Children; Erik Barnett, Senior Counselor to the Assistant Secretary, Immigration and Customs Enforcement; Francey Hakes, Office of the Deputy Attorney General; Peter Trahon, FBI; and Ernie Allen, President and CEO of the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.
(To read original announcement, visit this U.S. Department of Justice link.)