Dublin: Former Central Bank Manager Convicted Of Having Hundred Of Thousands Of Child Pornography Images & Videos

26 Jan

Raphael Farina - 760,000 files relating to or containing child pornography

Raphael Farina – 760,000 files relating to or containing child pornography

A FORMER Central Bank manager has been convicted of possessing hundreds of thousands of child pornography images and videos.

The jury took 20 minutes to find Raphael Farina (65) guilty of having material which included more than 100 images of babies.

The court heard he stored the files on his computer and on hundreds of discs in a cardboard box which he kept at work.

Farina, of Spranger’s Yard, Crow Street, Temple Bar, Dublin, pleaded not guilty to three counts of possession of child pornography at his home on June 6th, 2007.

His defence counsel did not contest any of the evidence against him during the trial and told the judge they were contesting only the validity of the search warrant used by gardaí.

The jury of nine men and two women returned a unanimous guilty verdict after the one-day trial. Judge Patricia Ryan remanded Farina on continuing bail until next month on condition he signs on three times a week and surrenders his passport.

Sgt Paul Murphy told prosecuting counsel Monika Leech that gardaí called to Farina’s home with a search warrant as part of an investigation into child pornography. Farina let the search take place and admitted immediately that he possessed the material, saying: “There’s no point in denying it.”

He pointed out a computer and a cardboard box full of discs, which he said he had taken home from work the previous day.

He said he had been downloading images since he got a computer in 1997 and had downloaded a mixture of adult and child pornography before saving it on floppy disks and CDs. He admitted that he had thousands of images and that some of them were “pretty graphic”.

He said he got the files from websites or online bulletin boards and that he never took the pictures himself or paid for them.

The main prosecution evidence came from Det Garda Gerard Keane, a computer forensic examiner who has worked with Europol and Interpol. He initially examined Farina’s computer, on which he found about 10,000 images and videos contained in folders labelled with titles such as “freshly creamed Lolitas” and “pre-pubes”. There were also 108 images of pornography involving babies.

There were 4,370 images depicting children’s genitals and 2,076 depicting sexual activity, including rape. He also found nearly 1,000 encrypted files which had “quite complicated” password protection.

Det Garda Keane then examined a box and envelope which contained 207 CDs, eight DVDs and 23 floppy disks. He said it was not possible to say exactly how many files these contained but it was between 100,000 and 700,000.

Many of the files consisted of instructions from “paedophile groups” on how to download the images and share them with other people.

Det Garda Keane said these groups used sophisticated methods of distribution, including splitting the files up and uploading the parts on different websites. Users such as Farina could then download the various parts and reassemble them using the group’s instructions.

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