Child Sexual Abuse Images

Child sexual abuse images are frequently referred to as child pornography, a term that rather trivializes the true nature of such depictions. The internet provides the opportunity for easy and vast distribution. Once put into circulation, it is almost impossible to completely rid the net of them again. For the victims themselves, child sexual abuse images therefore represent a lifelong confrontation with the abuse they have experienced. Beyond that, each individual use of this material increases the demand for more. Both the production and distribution, as well as the consumption of child sexual abuse images, are criminal offenses.

Child sexual abuse images have a stimulating effect on individuals who are sexually attracted to prepubertal children (pedophiles) or early pubertal children (hebephiles). These individuals are at very high risk of consuming child sexual abuse images and, through this use, of supporting the sexual exploitation of children.

The Prevention Network’s experience demonstrates that many people with pedophilic or hebephilic preferences suffer from their sexual interest and need help. Beyond that, a large group of those seeking help from the network confirm that they have either already used child sexual abuse images (dark field users) or are afraid that they will do so in the future (potential users). Many of the users have loved ones who know of their habit and also suffer as a result.

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