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Police arrest suspects accused of sharing nude photos of celebrities, minors

Thousands believed to have accessed photographs on Telegram app; minors among the hundreds of female victims

The victims of the distribution of nude photos in Telegram groups include women of all ages and from all walks of life (Archive photo: Flash90)
The victims of the distribution of nude photos in Telegram groups include women of all ages and from all walks of life (Archive photo: Flash90)

Police on Monday night arrested several people on suspicion of distributing nude photos of hundreds of women and girls, including models and celebrities, on the Telegram app.

The arrests followed a month-long investigation into the sharing of the photos, without the consent of the women, with thousands of users in private groups.

Among the hundreds of victims are underage girls. Police believe the men charged money in exchange for access to the photos.

The suspects in the case were not named, but reports identified the two main suspects as a 19-year-old man from Kiryat Atta and a 23-year-old man from Kiryat Haim. Their remand was extended until Wednesday.

In addition, three women — aged 26, 24, and 44 — were detained in connection to the case and were later released to house arrest.

As part of the investigation, police also seized computers during Monday night’s arrest raids.

In 2014, Israel became the first country to ban the distribution of so-called revenge porn in a bid to prevent the distribution of pornographic content over the internet.

The law, which targets sexually explicit media posted without the depicted person’s knowledge or consent, also covers content shared on social media. It stipulates that those found guilty of posting such content will be prosecuted as sex offenders, and that the offense is punishable by up to five years in prison.

Last year, police arrested a dozen men suspected of distributing nude photos and videos of women on a popular Telegram channel without their knowledge or consent.

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