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This man is suspected to be Christopher Neil, who used a swirl filter on his face in images depicting sex acts with children.  (Source: Interpol)

A photo of Neil taken by Thai immigration officials on October 11.  (Source: Interpol)

A photo of Neil submitted to Interpol (left) and one of the unscrambled photos of the suspect (right).  (Source: Interpol)
Interpol finds success in blasting the man’s face across the internet

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 Chuchart Suwannakom.
 
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 extradition.



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RE: Problems with the world
By sxr7171 on 10/21/2007 11:37:06 AM , Rating: 2
OK you have some points there worth thinking about. However you have to understand that when an adult decides to take a life of prostitution they are old enough to understand what they are doing. A child has no idea what is going on.

In fact it is even sick to think you could shift blame from those sick people who create a "market" for such disgusting acts. Soliciting sex from a minor is not normal behavior and we really don't want these people in society.

How would you like it if some person like this approached your child for a BJ and got it because your child some ice cream and didn't know better. Children are innocent and these perverts are taking advantage of that. You are assuming that the child is capable of understanding the choice they have and that is clearly not true.

I will agree that poverty places children around the world in situations where they are more likely to be approached by a child molester but the same could happen right here in the US.

These people are sick and while I don't care for ultra-violence against the guy, I want him off our streets. Apart from that put him in jail, therapy, whatever but not on our streets.


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