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The typical British consumer of child pornography, is a white male professional, probably working in IT.

An survey of 200 child porn suspects caught by the Thames Valley police in Operation Viola revealed that every one was male and no-one came from an ethnic minority.

As the Thames Valley is the heartland of the computer industry in the UK, it is perhaps not so surprising that many of the suspects are IT pros - other professionals collared in Operation Viola include doctors, managing directors and police officers. But the large number of computer companies in the Thames Valley may be the reason for the large number of child porn users in the area, police believe.

Police are now seeking academic help to research typical offenders. They want to see if links can be established between people who use child porn and people who rape children.

Operation Viola was part of Operation Ore, the national enquiry sparked by credit card details of 7,000 UK child porn users obtained by the FBI. In the Thames Valley, police seized 750 computers, 14,000 floppy disks and 5,000 CDs and prosecuted 115 people. ®

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