Child porn cases up in 1st half

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Child porn cases up in 1st halfECPAT/STOP Japan

September 13, 2013
Jiji Press
The number of child pornography cases handled by police in January-June rose by one from a year earlier to 763, the highest for a calendar first half since statistics began in 2000, the National Police Agency said Thursday.

The data show a sharp increase in cases involving the use of smartphones.

Police identified 316 new victims under the age of 18, a record high, with a year-on-year increase of 58.

Of the total, girls accounted for 89 percent. Victims of primary school age and younger totaled 48, including six preschoolers.

According to the NPA, suspected perpetrators used smartphones to contact 84 victims, or 27 percent. They used conventional mobile phones to contact 76 children, or 24 percent. In the first half of 2012, 7 percent used smartphones, against 42 percent who used conventional mobile phones.

Of the total cases in January-June this year, 407 involved “production” of child pornography, such as having children send naked images of themselves by e-mail, up by 110.

The number of “distribution” cases, including posting child porn on the Internet, fell by 109 to 356.

The number of distribution cases using file-sharing software fell sharply, but the NPA said perpetrators may be lying low as they are wary of police action.

The NPA also said police handled a total of 221 child abuse cases in January-June, involving 224 victims. The number of cases fell by 27 and the number of victims fell by 28, both down from record highs marked a year earlier, but the figures were still the sec-ond highest.

The number of child deaths from abuse was at a record low of 11, down from 12.

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