Denmark Man Convicted Only of Viewing Child Porn

Denmark Man Convicted Only of Viewing Child Porn

Days after a 33-year-old Danish man received a two year sentence for his role as a co-admin of the darknet child pornography forum “The Love Zone,” a Denmark court sentenced another man for similar crimes. This time, the defendant was an even younger man; court records revealed that he was only 22-years-old. The 22-year-old defendant had used a child pornography forum that the FBI investigated, deanonymized, and then sent user information to the relevant authorities.

That site’s name is unknown to very few: Playpen. Countless arrests followed the investigation, thanks to controversial tactics employed by the FBI. While suspects in the United States made the news at an almost numbing frequency, international cases progressed at a seemingly slower rate. The unnamed 22-year-old is the focus one of those international cases.

According to Thomas Mikkelsen, a prosecutor in West Himmerland, the 22-year-old defendant was one of the 8,000 (or more) Tor users illegally hacked by the Bureau. They hacked, as of the last count, individuals in more than 120 countries. The hack was controversial and ruled illegal by judges across the United States. And, as of the final count the FBI’s hack led to the arrest of 300 international suspects. The number convicted remains unknown.

Once the FBI had captured the young man’s IP address, they forwarded the information to Danish authorities. Danish authorities, in turn, completed the investigation. Based on the results of the defendant’s sentencing hearing, it appeared as if investigation in Denmark failed to get off the ground. The 22-year-old refused to acknowledge that he had ever accessed the site. Likewise, he argued that he had never seen or heard of the site and had not created the profile that the FBI and Danish authorities claimed he had created.

And based on either a lapse in the FBI’s foreign investigations, a little lack of evidence from the subsequent investigation in Denmark, or the defendant’s true “innocence,” the prosecution missed the conviction they had hoped to achieve. The court found the 22-year-old guilty of viewing child pornography “without possessing” child pornography. “It cost him 10 days of imprisonment,” Mikkelsen said.

This relaxed sentence seems to be a growing trend in recent child pornography cases. In mid-September, for example, Nicolas James Bone stood in court and explained how repulsed the illegal media made him feel. In fairness, Bone sought images of teenagers—according to his defense attorney, that is. But due to his remorse (and few images in his actual possession), the Court sentenced him to a suspended sentence and allowed him to avoid jail time whatsoever.

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