Child Porn Darknet Market Elysium Operators to Face Trial

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In the District Court of Limburg, Germany an accused administrator of the infamous darknet child abuse and pornography forum “Elysium” will face trial for 12 days. The presiding Judge Marco Schneider will carefully analyze the evidence for what is being touted as the most significant child pornography and abuse case in Germany ever.

The three other conspirators involved will also be indicted in the courtroom. According to German officials involved in the takedown of the Elysium forum, the three accused were moderators of the forum.

Elysium Front Page

It was a huge win for the world and blow to pedophiles everywhere when “Elysium” was shut down last year. For years now all federal governments have worked together to take down any child porn forum or website. Elysium was one of the largest darknet markets and exchanges for videos and films of the abuse of minors. It was the first large platform that was taken off the grid by Germany authorities. Moreover, one of the alleged administrators behind the network is a native born, from Central Hesse, Germany.

The trial will start on Thursday, August 2, at the Limburg district court.

Several processes have already occurred in Austria and Germany in connection with “Elysium”. Andreas May, The Frankfurt Attorney General accused the three of the four on conspiracy for proliferation, acquisition, and possession of child pornographic content. Similarly, the fourth suspect was also accused of the conspiracy of sexual acts on minors. This past June, a Shelton man was sentenced to 60 months in a federal penitentiary by the United States District Judge, Stefan R. Underhill in a federal court for the possession of child pornography.

The principal defendant is a 40-year-old from the district of Bad Camberg, who, together with a 58-year-old from the district of Tübingen in December 2016, was responsible for setting up the “Elysium” platform as a type of Darknet marketplace. The 40-year-old was alleged to have exclusive access for the operation of the server. The accused provided computers and access from his company and thus created the technical conditions for the operation of the platform.

Elysium Chat room

He is also up against charges for his own child pornographic recordings. After all, he is said to have acted as the moderator of part of the platform he handles. Furthermore, maintenance and operation of the platform are said to have been partly due to him, while the prosecution accused the 58-year-old Tübinger to have been significantly responsible for the programming of the Kinderporno Forum. He is also accused of acting as a moderator. He is said to have been involved in the operation of the defunct “Elysium” and responsible for his own exchanges, especially with two American pedophiles, known on the platform as “The Giftbox Exchange”. The Americans have already been sentenced to life imprisonment in the United States.

The two other defendants aged 47 and 62 from the Main-Tauber-Kreis in Baden-Württemberg and from Landsberg in Bavaria are said to have acted as moderators and chat administrators at “Elysium”. The 62-year-old is also accused of sexual abuse by others of his own children.

“More than 111,000 users were active in this site,” according to the lead investigator from the Giessen Central Office (ZIT). The success of the platform may have contributed to the fact that unlike the usual porn scene, as an admission requirement the provision of your own child pornography material was required. With so many members the information is mind-boggling how many children have been abused from one website alone.

According to the investigators, the members wrote a total of 1,866 posts and exchanged in chat areas in German, English, French, Spanish, and Italian. Among the images and video files were shots of severe sexually abused children, even infants.

The four defendants are currently detained in various prisons in Hesse and will meet for the first time at the start of the trial. They each will face the minimum of 10 years in prison for alleged rape of a minor.

Just recently French authorities took down the largest darknet marketplace, “Black Hand,” in all of France.  The forum offered child pornography and other illegal products. A week after the shutdown of the site its operators, a young mother of two and its accomplice were finally arrested by the local French police. Hopefully, soon enough, child porn will cease to exist on the clearnet and the dark web.

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