A paedophile has been jailed after authorities used a special video file to get him to unsuspectingly reveal his IP address.
The paedophile, Roy Harvender Jr. from New Castle County, Delaware, had been using an anonymising network to access child sexual abuse images, but the video lured him into opening “an internet connection outside of the network software”, allowing the FBI to track him down.
The 59-year-old was a member of Website 19, a child pornography website on , which was operational from 2012 to December 2014.
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His username was ‘ricenbeans’ and, like all other members of Website 19, he was required to constantly submit new content in order to retain access to the site.
Court documents obtained by the have revealed that an unidentified foreign law enforcement agency (FLA 1) arrested a member of Website 19 in June 2014, and used his account details to track down both its operator and the server hosting the site.
The operator, who was based in another country, agreed to cooperate with the police force that arrested him, and FLA 1 took control of Website 19 and “began operating the site from a computer server in its own jurisdiction”, in order to identify more of the site’s members.
In November 2014, FLA 1, “acting Independently and according to its own national laws”, posted a link to a video on a Website 19 forum.
The file “was advertised as a preview of a child pornography website with streaming video”, and when members of Website 19 hit the link, they were informed that the file would play on an external website.
“If the user chose to open the file, a video file containing images of child pornography began to play, and FLA 1 captured and recorded the IP address of the user accessing the file,” reads the court document.
“FLA 1 configured the video file to open an Internet connection outside of the Network software, thereby allowing FLA 1 to capture the user’s actual IP address, as well as a session identifier to tie the IP address to the activity of a particular ‘Website 19’ user account.”
Harvender Jr. clicked through, prompting FLA 1 to inform the FBI when his US IP address was exposed.
Further investigations led to Harvender Jr.’s arrest. Though he admitted to being a member of Website 19, he claimed not to know that possession of child pornography was illegal.
He pled guilty to one count of distribution of child pornography, and has been sentenced to 13 years behind bars.