CEBU CITY – A 33-year-old Filipino was sentenced to 20 years in prison after pleading guilty today to producing “child pornography”.
“The result in court today demonstrates the commitment of the Australian Federal Police, Queensland Police Service, our state and territory partners in Australia, together with the Philippine National Police, National Bureau of Investigation, International Justice Mission and our international partners, including Interpol and Europol, to ensuring perpetrators of child sexual exploitation are charged and prosecuted regardless of their location,” Federal Agent Graeme Marshall, Australian Federal Police Liaison Officer, Philippines, stated.
The European Union Agency for Law Enforcement Cooperation (Europol) had named Nelson Turayno most wanted criminal for recording himself raping Filipino children ages 3 to 6 years old and sharing those sexual abuse videos on the dark-web for online child sex offenders to view. He was arrested in Cebu City on 12 April 2019 in a joint operation by the National Bureau of Investigation – Anti-Human Trafficking Division (NBI-AHTRAD) and the Philippine National Police – Women and Children Protection Center (PNP-WCPC).
The joint PNP and NBI investigation was a consequence of an Australian Federal Police and Queensland Joint Anti Child Exploitation Team (JACET) referral in August 2018.
Turayno was originally charged with section 4[c] of RA 10175, which is punishable by 40 years imprisonment. Under his plea agreement yesterday, however, he entered his guilty plea to producing child sexual abuse materials (“CSAM”) under section 4[b] of RA 9775 before Judge Ramon Daomilas Jr. of Cebu City Regional Trial Court Branch 11 at 2:30 p.m. yesterday. Aside from serving a 20-year sentence, the judge also ordered Turayno to pay 2 million pesos (over A$57,500) in fines.
Turayno, who hails from Iligan City, is still facing other charges of qualified trafficking, acts of lasciviousness and rape.
“Today’s conviction in Cebu City will resound globally as a shout of justice from the Philippines for all children ravaged by online child sexual abuse—the world is on your side and we will bring this violence against you to an end until all children are safe and free,”
declared John Tanagho, International Justice Mission Cebu Field Office Director.
So far in IJM-supported cases, 74 persons have been convicted in the Philippines for cybersex trafficking since 2011. IJM has supported Philippine law enforcement agencies in the arrest of 238 perpetrators and the rescue of 566 victims and children at-risk across the country.
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INTERNATIONAL JUSTICE MISSION is a global organisation that protects the poor from violence throughout the developing world. IJM partners with local authorities to rescue victims of violence, bring criminals to justice, restore survivors and strengthen justice systems.
For more information, visit IJM.org.au
Partner agencies from the Philippine Internet Crimes Against Children Center (PICACC) – namely, the Australian Federal Police, the United Kingdom National Crime Agency, and nongovernment organisation International Justice Mission (IJM) – supported the operation in which Turayno was arrested earlier this year.
Armed with evidence acquired during investigations, a search warrant was secured on April 11, 2019 from Judge Ramon B. Daomilas Jr. of Regional Trial Court Branch 11 Cebu City, the designated Cybercrime Court in Region 7. The following day, joint forces from NBI-AHTRAD and the PNP-WCPC arrested Turayno for possession of child sexual exploitation materials (CSEM) with intent to sell, distribute, publish or broadcast, with the use of information communications technology. He was arrested at his rented room in Barangay Luz, Cebu City where thousands of CSAM, including videos depicting Turayno sexually abusing children, were found in his possession. Read more about the arrest here.
The PICACC is a collective effort to combat child exploitation across the Philippines by law enforcement – the PNP, the NBI, the Australian Federal Police, and the United Kingdom National Crime Agency; in partnership with IJM. This collaborative international effort protects children through an enhanced global response to combatting cybersex trafficking, also known as the online sexual exploitation of children (OSEC).
Federal Agent Graeme Marshall, Australian Federal Police Liaison Officer, Philippines:
“The result in court today demonstrates the commitment of the Australian Federal Police, Queensland Police Service, our state and territory partners in Australia, together with the Philippine National Police, National Bureau of Investigation, International Justice Mission and our international partners, including INTERPOL and EUROPOL, to ensuring perpetrators of child sexual exploitation are charged and prosecuted regardless of their location.”
John Tanagho, International Justice Mission Cebu Field Office Director:
“Turayno preyed on vulnerable children, sexually abusing young Filipino boys for his own deviant desires. He then recorded himself raping these young children in videos that he shared with other offending paedophiles around the world—men who selfishly consume videos of suffering children only to satisfy their perverse lusts. They care nothing for the trauma and violence they inflict on the most precious members of our society,” declared Atty.. “Today’s conviction in Cebu City will resound globally as a shout of justice from the Philippines for all children ravaged by online child sexual abuse—the world is on your side and we will bring this violence against you to an end until all children are safe and free.”
Regional State Prosecutor Fernando Gubalane, chair of the Inter-Agency Council Against Trafficking 7 (Central Visayas):
“We are committed to protecting our children from the violence of this kind of exploitation. I applaud all of our partners who continue to work together to let the world know that we are serious in this fight to end the online sexual exploitation of children. This case is just one example of how we will continue to pursue justice.”
PNP-WCPC Chief, PBGEN William Macavinta:
“Turayno’s actions are inexcusable, and this case is another example of how these online sex offenders will be held accountable under the law for their actions. WCPC will support working under PICACC to ensure global cooperation and response until the Philippines is protected from those who victimiSe our innocent children using the internet. Regardless of the nationality of the perpetrator or wherever he is, we will stop at nothing to provide justice in these cases.”
NBI-AHTRAD Chief, Atty. Janet Francisco:
“It is critical that we all work together as partners with the common goal to end the online sexual exploitation of children. This case is an example of the excellent international, national, and local collaboration that will make this possible. To those still abusing children, take this as a lesson that we will not stop until justice is served.”
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