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FBI ran child porn site to catch predators, and now accused are crying foul...

FBI ran child porn site to catch predators, and now accused are crying foul...

by Kevin Krause, DALLAS NEWS --

When Daryl Glenn Pawlak logged into a large child pornography website and downloaded images using his work computer, he was charged with receipt and possession of child pornography.

The operator of the website that was exploiting children, however, was not arrested.

That’s because it was the FBI. And federal prosecutors are defending the agency’s decision to secretly hijack and peddle child porn for two weeks as part of a sting operation.

During that time, tens of thousands of images of child pornography were uploaded to the site.

"Not only was the government the largest distributor of child pornography ... it was also the largest exploiter of children," Pawlak’s attorney said in a court filing. "This conduct is the essence of outrageousness, and a serious need for deterrence exists."

The case has ignited debate among legal scholars and defense attorneys about internet privacy and the FBI's decision to keep such a website up and running while more children were harmed.

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