Toronto police and the Federal Bureau of Investigation rescued five
children from sexual abuse after identifying one of them, a six-year-old
North Carolina girl, from pornographic images obtained from the web.
Staff Insp. Bruce Smollet said members of the Child Exploitation
Section of the Sex Crimes Unit received a series of 450 images of the
girl from police in the United Kingdom.
After closely examining the images, they were able to identify the
school attended by the victim. The FBI were able to identify the girl
and arrest her attacker, rescuing her from what Smollet called
"We aren't resting as far as trying to identify victims,"
he said. "To us, that's the most important part of any child
In the images, the young girl is threatened with knives and confined
in a dog cage.
"They're the most disgusting, disgraceful things that I can
imagine," Smollet said.
Toronto police obtained the images in December 2003. Det. Ian Lamond
of the Child Exploitation Section said that within a day and a half of
receiving the images, police identified a wristband the child was
wearing as being from the state of North Carolina.
Examining a T-shirt worn by the the girl, detectives were able to
identify the name of the school she attended in Raleigh, N.C.
Doris Gardner, supervising special agent for the FBI's cybercrime
squad, said an arrest was made eight hours after Toronto police
"They gave us everything that we needed to proceed to identify
the child and make an arrest," she said.
The man they arrested for the crime had access to the child, police
said, but they would not reveal his relationship to her to protect her
Further investigation of the man arrested uncovered allegations he
had also been sexually abusing a three-month-old infant. The FBI also
discovered he had been sharing files and chatting with a woman in
Dallas, Texas. Police now accuse her of "renting out" her
three children to pedophiles who had come from as far away as Britain.
The woman was arrested and her children removed by authorities.
Smollet said the investigation by British authorities into the abuse of
the three Dallas children is centring in Surrey, the same area where the
images of the Raleigh girl were first obtained.
Brian Tod Schellenberger, 41, of Cary, N.C. is charged with the
production and possession of child pornography.