Qld Police tip leads to man’s arrest in US over child abuse material

Anton NilssonNCA NewsWire
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Camera IconNot Supplied Credit: Supplied

A US sex offender who posted pictures of children to a dark web forum was busted in Michigan after a tip-off from Queensland detectives.

Westley James Keyes was arrested last week by US Homeland Security officers investigating information from Queensland Police’s anti-child abuse squad, according to a court filing in Michigan Western District Court.

The court documents state Argos investigators obtained pictures posted to a dark web forum and were able to identify where they were taken “using manual man hours surfing open-source images and street-views of locations.”

US sex offender Westley James Keyes was arrested by US Homeland Security.
Camera IconUS sex offender Westley James Keyes was arrested by US Homeland Security. Credit: Supplied
Fatal Follower
Camera IconQueensland Police helped catch the US sex offender. Credit: News Corp Australia

The Queensland detectives were able to figure out that one of the pictures was taken in a park in Hickory Corners, Michigan, and another in front of a house in the town of Battle Creek.

Using the tip from Queensland, US Homeland Security officers were able to locate the children in the pictures, who told investigators in interviews Keyes had taken pictures of them.

Queensland Police confirmed it assisted with the investigation.

“Investigators work closely with law enforcement nationally and internationally to share intelligence and offer investigative assistance relating to computer facilitated child exploitation,” a spokesperson told NCA NewsWire.

Keyes, 39, who is a registered sex offender with a previous conviction for child abuse activity, allegedly shared 56 images on a dark web exploitation forum from May 2020.

News BCM 27-08-2012 Task Force ARGOS Training Briefing  a Detective at work in Task Force ARGOS     Pic Norrish
Camera IconTask Force Argos has existed since 1996. Credit: News Limited

The Queensland detectives also shared with their US colleagues chat messages written by a username allegedly associated with Keyes.

One of the disturbing messages allegedly read: “God I love being a pedo”.

Task Force Argos was set up in 1996 to investigate historical allegations of institutionalised child abuse, but the unit has shifted focus to hunt down paedophiles online.

“Argos investigators are online every day, across a range of platforms, targeting offenders attempting to exploit children and analysing digital media to identify and rescue children across the globe,” the Queensland Police spokesperson said.

“The unit’s investigative expertise has resulted in the rescue of many children from abuse and offenders being brought to justice worldwide.”

Originally published as Qld Police tip leads to man’s arrest in US over child abuse material

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