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Canadian police charge multiple people after take down of ‘Big Box Store’ of child pornography

Canadian police have charged five people associated with a huge operation that knowingly facilitated the sharing of child pornography for profit.

In October of 2012 a complaint was made to the Toronto Police Service, which triggered “Project Greenwell.”

<who>Photo credit: Ontario Provincial Police

Police described Porject Greenwell as a complex, multi-national criminal investigation that first looked at those who uploaded and downloaded images and video files to what could be called a 'big box store' of child pornography.

The servers were housed at a business in Toronto known as YesUp Media.

A subsequent investigation called Project Blackheath targeted the operators of the business, who police say knowingly facilitated the sharing of these images for profit.

There were 60,000 registered users in at least 116 different countries and at least 19,013 users purchased 30-day premium memberships.

The Toronto Police provided a map showing the reach of the operation. Each of the dots represent a town where one or more of the suspected users downloaded child pornography from this Toronto-hosted website.

<who>Photo credit: Ontario Provincial Police

Five people associated with Yesup Media have been charged with a total of 11 offences, including possession of child pornography, making available child pornography, and failure to report internet child pornography by persons who provide an internet service.

A Canada-Wide Warrant has been issued for the arrest of a resident of Vietnam.

The five accused are scheduled to appear at the Ontario Superior Court of Justice in Toronto on August 1, 2019.

They have been released with undertakings from the court, including surrendering their passports, remaining within the province of Ontario, and prohibitions from engaging in a business or enterprise with any party that has been the subject of a complaint with respect to child pornography.

'I'm proud of the leadership being demonstrated to address the web hosts and administrators who - in Canada - have a legal duty and a responsibility to respond when they are made aware that illegal content is being trafficked through their infrastructure. Not only have police reduced the number of 'customers' who abuse children online, we've removed the platform that held their monstrous content,” said Commissioner Thomas Carrique.

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