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Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Real-world monster has nowhere to hide

Child-raping scumbag Christopher Paul Neil at an airport in Thailand.

Last week, Interpol asked for help in catching a child-rapist. This week, they released not only a better photo of him, the fact they know what country he's hiding in, but also his name and nationality. If you know anything about the habits or whereabouts of 32-year-old Canadian Chrisopher Paul Neil, contact Interpol.

A suspected paedophile who posted digitally obscured pictures on the Internet showing him raping young boys was identified by police Tuesday as a 32-year-old Canadian on the run in Thailand.

The Interpol detective leading the manhunt and the organisation's leader separately urged the fugitive to give himself up to the authorities, after his face became clear.

"He is now internationally known," case officer Mick Moran told AFP. "Really, there is no place for him to hide."

Interpol's secretary general Ronald Noble, called on alleged paedophile Canadian Christopher Paul Neil, nicknamed "Vico," to turn himself in.

"Our goal is for Christopher Paul Neil to turn himself in to local (Thai) authorities or to Canadian authorities and to return home to Canada," Noble told public broadcaster CBC.

Thai police and Interpol identified Neil as the suspect and said he arrived into Bangkok's main airport last Thursday.

Interpol says 200 photos have been circulating on the Internet, showing the man assaulting 12 different young boys.

They appeared to have been taken in Vietnam and Cambodia, countries that have gained reputations as destinations for sex tourism.

A special crimes unit in Germany was able to produce a picture of him from one of his photos that had been digitally swirled to disguise his face.

"We are confident that we can track him down," Moran said.

"Interpol's network is very large. I have no doubt that we will find him -- maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow, but definitely we will find him."

He said authorities were able to track him down thanks to an unprecedented global appeal by the International Criminal Police Organization based in Lyon, France.

"It basically broke this case for us," he said.

Some 350 people reportedly responded to its groundbreaking step last Monday of issuing the request for assistance on its website, where the agency posted the reconstructed picture of the suspect.

The agency said key information came from five different sources on three continents.

Thai police said they were working closely with Interpol.

"Thai police are collecting evidence and information from neighbouring countries and other Interpol members to seek a court order for an arrest warrant," police Colonel Apichart Suriboonya told AFP.

Interpol's Cambodian office said immigration officers were put on alert in case Neil tried to enter the country.

"We have alerted all of our international borders," Keo Vanthan, head of Interpol in Cambodia, told reporters in Phnom Penh, adding, however, that no arrest warrant has been issued for Neil.

Interpol says Neil was a teacher of English at a South Korean school, but that he flew to Bangkok on October 11, when security cameras at the airport documented his arrival at immigration.

That image -- released by Interpol -- shows him as balding and with glasses, although previous pictures had him with more hair and no glasses.

International police and prosecutors are still collating evidence to bring charges against the man Interpol has dubbed "Vico."

Moran said Interpol wanted to send a message around the world that sex crimes against children would not be tolerated.

"We wanted to make it very clear to everybody, especially to Western men who travel to this region to abuse children, that we won't tolerate it," he said

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