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Dublin Man Jailed For 27 Years For Facilitating Sharing Of Child Abuse Images

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07:15 16 Sep 2021


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A Dublin man has been sentenced to 27 years in prison in the US after pleading guilty to conspiring to advertise child abuse images on the dark web.

Eric Eoin Marques was sentenced by a Maryland court on Wednesday.

The 36-year-old had been described by the FBI as the "world's largest facilitator of child abuse imagery".

Marques was extradited to the US by Irish authorities two years ago to face the criminal charges.

Prosecutors said his anonymous service contained more than 8.5 million images of child abuse, with almost 2 million involving victims not known to officers.

Noeline Blackwell, Chief Executive of Dublin Rape Crisis Centre says his sentence was the maximum of what he could have received under the plea agreement:

"The 27 year sentence was a very significant sentence for a very significant set of crimes over a number of years.

"There is hardly anything that you can think of that is a worse crime than the exploitation and abuse of children - and the facilitation by criminals of making money out of that extreme abuse of children.

Blackwell also says that Marques sentencing sends out clear messages: "That the law takes this kind of crime - the exploitation of sometimes very young children - very seriously.

"But I suppose it also sends out a message to everybody - who looks at that kind of child abuse, who distributes that kind of abuse, and who pays for it - every one of those who is implicit in this kind of criminal behaviour".

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