Five Arrested in Marin County Child Pornography Sweep

Over 70 detectives from 23 agencies collaborated with the Silicon Valley Internet Crimes Against Children (SVICAC) in serving search warrants at seven Marin residences.

Five Marin County men were arrested Thursday following a countywide sweep of suspected child pornography users by the Silicon Valley Internet Crimes Against Children (SVICAC) task force, according to a press statement from the San Rafael Police Department.

Those arrested include San Rafael resident Carlos Martinez, 31; Daniel Dinneen, 22, of Fairfax; Charles T. Brown, 48, of Bolinas; and Mads Buemann, 48, of Larkspur, according to the release.

In Novato, police searched homes on both Aaron and Lark Courts, resulting in the arrest of the 16-year-old boy on suspicion of possession of child pornography, said Lt. Keith Heiden of the Novato Police Department. 

All of the individuals were arrested on suspicion of felony possession of child pornography.  Dinneen had two additional felony charges on suspicion of weapons violations. The adults were booked at Marin County Jail and the juvenile was cited and released. 

A cluster of suspected child pornography users detected in Marin County led the SVICAC task force to conduct the operation, which began early Thursday morning after a 6:30 a.m. briefing with local detectives, according to Heiden.

According to Rohrbacher, in a on-camera interview with KGO news, the task force was searching for illegal material on computers. 

"Imagine the worst of the worst and it's worse than that," said Rohrbacher in the interview.

"This is not 'Girls Gone Wild.' This is pre-pubescent children down to anywhere from infants up to maybe 8, 9, 10," Rohrbacher said.

Lt. Heiden said the sweep was planned well-in-advance -- an email listing the seven locations where search warrants would be served and executed was sent to coordinating agencies on Feb. 2.

Over 70 detectives from 23 agencies participated in collaboration with the Silicon Valley Internet Crimes Against Children (SVICAC) Task Force.

Local detectives included teams from San Rafael, Novato, Twin Cities, Fairfax, Mill Valley, Tiburon, and San Jose police departments, along with the Marin County Sheriff's Office, Marin County District Attorney’s Office, the FBI, and Homeland Security. 

Officers armed with warrants searched seven homes in San Rafael, Novato, Fairfax, Larkspur and Santa Venetia in unincorporated Marin County, according to Heiden.

According to Rohrbacher, computers with pornographic images and other evidence linking the men to the possession of child pornography were seized.

San Rafael Police Chief Diana Bishop said “I am gratified that our agency was able to work in partnership with other Marin County law enforcement agencies, as well as detectives from the San Jose Police Department, to identify and arrest those who prey on our children.”

The 8-year-old Silicon Valley task force is one of 61 around the nation targeting online peer-to-peer file sharing evolving from previous investigative techniques when suspects often were identified through chat room decoy operations.

The task force has an eleven-county responsibility including: Napa, Sonoma, Marin, Contra Costa, Alameda, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Santa Cruz, Monterey and San Benito.

Investigators search for hard-core images involving children, see who is downloading the images to individual IP (Internet Protocol) addresses, use search warrants to determine who owns the individual IP address, and then execute additional search warrants for those people’s homes.

A key feature of the task force arsenal is a mobile forensics lab that allows investigators in a technology-stocked van to drive up to a suspect's home, seize hard drives, and immediately begin searching for evidence that would normally take months to obtain from a State Department of Justice lab.

Shirley Humann Shanahan February 24, 2012 at 05:40 AM
Not a very good Christian remark to make: But may they all rot in Hell! Anyone who abuses a child should be shot.
Trent Anderson February 24, 2012 at 03:42 PM
Child porn is only for sickos, glad they caught them. My question is: if the authorities have the tools to observe and catch someone downloading child porn from the internet, why don't they have the tools and ability to find and arrest the ones who are posting it on the internet in the first place?
Monica February 24, 2012 at 04:26 PM
I wait anxiously for the answer to this question.
Kelly Dunleavy O'Mara February 24, 2012 at 09:42 PM
So, supposedly Ashton Kutcher was riding along during the raids: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/46517159/ns/local_news-san_francisco_bay_area_ca/
Claudia Miles March 08, 2012 at 08:12 PM
The people posting the porn are (unfortunately) high tech experts & they are experts in hiding IP locations, routing them through various countries, and leading back to "nowhere." The FBI works diligently on these things but they are dealing with people who's entire goal is to hide. Some of these folks can even tell when they are being tracked and then re-rout addresses or change their actual physical location. Until they can be stopped, it helps to stop their "customers" as they pay top dollar and provide a constant stream of funds for these sick horrific criminals to use to fund their operation. The less cash they have, the harder it is to keep their operation going. And the only reason they continue doing it is there is a market. Arresting the criminals client base and publicly shaming them is a way to scare others into NOT purchasing this product. But I do know law enforcement, the FBI, works very hard on this & dedicates substantial resources to shutting these guys down, but the ability to hide on the Internet for hacker-types is profound & designed to make them impossible to locate - even country.


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