As it turns out, Interpol’s pleas for
help in searching for the “swirly-faced” child molester have met
with success: Canadian national Christopher Neil – the man behind the
Photoshop filter – was found and arrested in Thailand, on
suspicion of sex crimes against young boys.
According to local police reports, Neil had been in Thailand for not more than
a week, abruptly leaving his teaching position in South Korea immediately after
his picture was broadcast worldwide. He was spotted by airport security cameras
in Thailand, sporting a shaved head and glasses. To quote Reuters, the search for Neil was “a manhunt to rival [the] search
for JonBenet Ramsey murder suspect Mark Karr.”
Thailand issued a warrant for Neil’s arrest, based on accusations that he paid
for oral sex from two Thai teenagers, who were aged 9 and 14 at the time. A
trace was executed on Neil’s boyfriend’s cell phone, and he was pinpointed to a
remote province called Nakhon Ratchasima, about 150 miles northeast of Bangkok
and “well off the normal tourist trail.” The two had been travelling around to
different provinces and were “probably on the run,” said tourist police chief
Interpol was originally apprehensive about posting the unscrambled photographs
online, partly because it would signal to other crooks that they were capable
of descrambling the swirl pattern – and possibly other obfuscation techniques –
and partly out of respect for the perpetrator’s family and privacy. However, it
was decided that the need to find him outweighed these concerns, and so his
image was posted online a little over a week ago. The response was nothing
short of torrential: over 200 different responses were received within the
first 12 hours of the posting.
It appears that this case is closed, as Interpol has mountains of photographic
evidence against the suspect. If convicted, Neil faces up to 20 years in a Thai
prison, notwithstanding additional punishment from his home country of Canada,
which has laws against child sex crimes committed abroad, if it chooses to seek
quote: WTF is the deal with child molesters? Why do they all have that same look? Is it the unrelenting guilt of their decaying humanity that makes them all look creepy as hell?
quote: pound me in the ass prison years
quote: Let me get this straight:1 - child molesters are just guys with too much gay cooties?2 - and they enjoy the treatment they get in prison?
quote: It would seem that the oldest tricks are still the best. Overlay the face with a black box and there's nothing left to descramble.