Seven arrested for sharing compromising media of girls, women

Seven men are accused of taking part in a secret Telegram group in which they shared compromising videos and photos of girls and women without consent.

The Telegram logo is seen on a screen of a smartphone in this picture illustration (photo credit: ILYA NAYMUCHIN)
The Telegram logo is seen on a screen of a smartphone in this picture illustration
(photo credit: ILYA NAYMUCHIN)

Israel Police's Lahav 433 unit arrested seven suspects for allegedly leaking hundreds of compromising photos and videos of girls and women without their knowledge in secret Telegram groups, an Israel Police spokesperson reported on Monday.

Over the last week, Unit 105, which specializes in the protection of children online within Lahav 433, has been conducting an investigation based on complaints and gathered evidence. Investigators found that there was a closed group on Telegram in which the participants held conversations of a sexual nature and shared the photos and videos without the knowledge of their subjects.

According to the Videos Law, the sharing or publication of sexual videos without the consent of the subjects is strictly prohibited and can lead to a prison sentence of up to five years.

The suspicion is that the group has been active for months and over 170 videos and photos were shared during that time. Despite the anonymity of the group, the investigators were able to determine the identity of its members, three of whom are IDF soldiers.

After gathering statements from the victims, the investigation was made public and police officers arrested the seven suspects and confiscated digital evidence for the sake of the investigation.

Man in handcuffs - illustrative (credit: INGIMAGE / ASAP)Man in handcuffs - illustrative (credit: INGIMAGE / ASAP)

Another man was arrested earlier this month for allegedly posing as a 10-year-old and asking a nine-year-old girl for nude photos which he then used to blackmail her.

On Wednesday, the Committee for the Advancement of Women and Gender Equality took a tour of Unit 105. They were told that the unit dealt with 11,771 cases in 2021 out of which, 77% of the perpetrators were male, and the rest were female.

Another report by State Comptroller Matanyahu Englman found that a quarter of victims being illegally filmed and a third of online sexual criminal offenses are committed against minors.