'660 suspected paedophiles' arrested in major operation

660 suspected paedophiles including doctors, teachers and former police officers have been arrested in the biggest ever UK crackdown on obscene images of children.

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Huge increase in indecent images in circulation

NCA deputy director general Phil Gormley said the scale of offending discovered by the child abuse operation was "shocking".

His colleague, chief constable Simon Bailey, said the number of indecent images of children has risen from under 10,000 in the 1990s to a figure in the tens of millions today.


Doctors, teachers and Scout leaders among arrests

NCA officers attend an address on a previous operation. Credit: PA

The NCA said suspects include doctors, teachers, Scout leaders, care workers and former police officers. In total, only 39 registered sex offenders are among those arrested.

Officers have searched 833 properties and examined 9,172 computers, phones and hard drives.

The NCA said it built up "intelligence packages" on suspects and sent them to police forces across Britain.

Internet users accessing child abuse images 'targeted'

The six-month operation targeted internet users who access child abuse images but has already led to charges for serious sexual assault.

Among the several hundred people arrested across England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland are workers who had access to children through their jobs and had no previous contact with police.

The massive investigation, involving 45 police forces, led to hundreds of children being "safeguarded", the NCA said.

It stressed that none of those arrested is a serving or former MP or member of the Government.


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