| 05.06,20. 02:37 PM |
Alleged online child sex abuse network busted by Federal Police, 9 arrested and 14 children rescued
AFP Assistant Commissioner Lesa Gale says three men are facing life imprisonment.(ABC News: George Roberts)
Australian Federal Police (AFP) have released details of a major investigation into an alleged child sex abuse network that operated across three states.
Police said 40 charges had been laid and nine men arrested in relation to child abuse that was filmed, photographed and shared online.
The operation began in February after a tip-off from US authorities.
At least 14 children have been removed from harmful situations.
Two men aged in their 20s were arrested yesterday on the New South Wales Mid North Coast and have each been charged with offences relating to the harm and exploitation of children.
The AFP will allege the pair were part of an online network that abused Australian children and recorded the crimes to share with others.
Police said the arrests were linked to alleged criminal activity across New South Wales, Queensland and Western Australia.
Assistant Commissioner Lesa Gale described the investigation as "most horrific" and said it resulted in police obtaining tens of thousands of images.
She said the investigation involved dozens of specialist operators working around the country.
"Operation Arkstone has shaken some of our most seasoned officers," Assistant Commissioner Gale said.
"A total of 40 charges have been laid, with three of the men facing life imprisonment.
"It takes a network to break a network and to this end, we want to thank our police partners."