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17 people held in child porn raids

Police have arrested 17 people in a series of raids targeting the possession of indecent images of children.

In the past two days, a team of 54 police officers targeted 13 addresses across Hampshire.

This led to the 17 arrests, with more than 150 pieces of equipment including computers, cameras and memory sticks being seized.

Police believe that 21 children have been safeguarded from potential direct harm as a result of the raids, which have been given the title of Operation Trinity.

A Hampshire police spokesman said: "Operation Trinity aims to protect children and bring to justice those believed to be accessing and sharing indecent material online. It is a co-ordinated response to information received by Hampshire Constabulary and none of the suspects are believed to be known to each other."

Detective Superintendent Jason Hogg, head of the force's specialist investigations department, said: "Our message is clear: if you're accessing, downloading, sharing or distributing indecent images of children, you cannot hide from us.

"We regularly receive and act on information about this kind of online activity so you can expect a visit from us soon."

In the past 12 months, 168 cases of indecent images have been referred to Hampshire police, a force spokesman said.

The 17 men arrested have all been questioned and released on bail pending further police inquiries.

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