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Facebook vigilantes name alleged pedophiles in Northern Ireland

By Henry McDonald, The Guardian
Wednesday, September 12, 2012 8:57 EDT
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Online vigilantes are using Facebook to name alleged paedophiles in a County Derry town.

The Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) has confirmed it is monitoring a Facebook page that prints the names and addresses of alleged child abusers in Limavady.

But the PSNI has resisted calls for the page to be shut down even though more than 1,000 people are following it and some have made threatening remarks.

The Facebook page also contains pictures of individuals as well other personal details. The PSNI said it had identified the person behind the page.

On the social network site, members of the page talk about convicted and suspected paedophiles across the Limavady borough council area, in the north-west part of Northern Ireland.

The mayor of Limavady, Cathal McLaughlin, said he was disappointed that the police had not taken action to remove the page, and demanded it be taken down immediately.

PSNI chief inspector Sam Donaldson said it was important to point out that the vast majority of the site content was already in the public domain as a result of news reports.

He said the management of sex offenders was understandably “a very emotive and concerning issue for the community”, and he would like to reassure the public that police were fully committed to dealing with the issue in the most protective and professional way.

© Guardian News and Media 2012

 
 
 
 
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