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March 19, 2024

‘My 17-year-old son was arrested for sharing child abuse images – he said it was a relief’ 

  • A mother has described how her autistic son became one of the thousands of under-18s caught viewing or sharing indecent images of children.
  • Research published in February found some people viewing child sexual abuse material (CSAM) said they had become desensitised to adult pornography, leading them to seek more violent material.
  • The Lucy Faithfull Foundation is a charity offering support to online sex offenders, and reported that last year, 217,889 individuals were concerned about their own or someone else’s sexual thoughts or behaviour.
  • For more, please visit The Guardian website.

More young people being radicalised online, says UK counter-terror officer 

  • A senior counter-terrorism officer has warned that children and young people are increasingly being radicalised online.
  • Det Supt Andy Meeks reported this was due to spending long periods on the internet during the pandemic.
  • The UK Home Office figures released last week showed that the number of children arrested on suspicion of terror offences reached a record high last year.
  • For more, please visit The Guardian website.

‘Sneaky’ social media ads are luring young into gambling, say campaigners 

  • Researchers at Bristol University have argued that harsher rules are required to crack down on betting firms’ use of “sneaky” social media postings and campaigns that may lure young people into gambling.
  • The research found many children do not recognise these promotions, known as content marketing, as advertising.
  • It warns that this may lead to children following betting companies on social media, increasing the likeliness that they sign up when they turn 18.
  • For more, please visit The Guardian website.

Majority of human trafficking victims identified in Northern Ireland come from three East African countries 

  • Last year there were 462 referrals to the National Referral Mechanism, a framework for identifying and referring potential victims of modern slavery, human trafficking and exploitation in Northern Ireland.
  • Most victims were from Eritrea (165), Somalia (119) and Sudan (45).
  • The majority were exploited for labour, however a significant number, including children, were found to have been sexually exploited.
  • For more, please visit the Belfast Live website.