A Moldovian national was arrested at his rented home in Prachuap Khiri Khan’s Thab Sakae district on Tuesday over accusations that he had reaped benefits from a website that earned Bt123 million per year from feeding child pornographic materials to others, police told a press conference in Bangkok on Wednesday.
The arrest of the 30-year-old suspect, Serghei Cependiuc, was the result of cooperation between the Thai police and their Netherlands counterparts, Technology Crime Suppression Division (TCSD) commander Pol Maj-General Worawat Watnakhonbancha said.
The joint investigation found a website providing services in uploading and downloading audio and video files of child pornographic materials to customers who were required to pay US$19.95 (Bt635) per month, he said.
The investigation found that the website earned around US$3.8 million (Bt123 million) and a Dominica-registered company was running it while Cependiuc was identified as one of the website’s administrators, he said. An arrest warrant was issued for Cependiuc, who has been in and out of Thailand since 2009 and has a Thai wife. He was arrested along with allegedly 18 items of evidence.
Police investigation so far has found that Cependiuc served as the website’s administrator to manage data and materials – all of which were of foreign girls. Police said there was no Thai victim or Thai accomplice. Worawat said Cependiuc would face prosecution in Thailand.
Netherland police technology crime suppression commander Gert Ras said his agency had first investigated the website and then contacted the Thai police after locating one of the culprits was living in Thailand.
Besides the operation that netted Cependiuc in southern Thailand and the Netherlands police closing the website, another related operation was conducted in Bulgaria, resulting in the arrest of website administrator and Moldovian national Alexander Osadcii.
It was suspected that tens of thousands people were involved in uploading child pornographic video clips onto this website, he added.