Madrid: The Spanish Interior Ministry on Thursday said 56 men, the majority of them between 40 and 60 years of age, have been detained during a massive nationwide operation against child pornography, media reported.
The operation saw the police raid 39 homes across Spain, confiscating 173 hard drives as well as 614 compact discs and DVDs filled with pornographic images of young boys and girls, Xinhua news agency reported.
Meanwhile, one search in Spain’s Murcia city also led to the recovery of two revolvers.
Over 150 police officers took part in the operation, which was organised among 33 territorial units and different departments of the Spanish National Police, including the Child Protection Unit and the Unit for Technological Investigation. The operation was supervised by 46 different regional courts.
Those arrested are facing charges of the production of child pornography, although the police are also investigating to see if they can press charges of sexual abuse in some cases, while also trying to determine the connections between those arrested and other pedophiles, who have so far escaped detection.
The National Police said the detainees shared their files through Peer-to-Peer (P2P) networks and that the operation had been in development since early 2015 when the police began searching a P2P network to identify users who were using the network to distribute child pornography.
This search identified 73 users, some of whom had been arrested prior to Thursday’s operation.