Why Was Azov Films Under Investigation in 2013?


Quick Answer

In 2013, Azov Films was the target of an international investigation known as Project Spade, which alleged that the company was producing and distributing child pornography. Based in Toronto, Azov entered the radar of Canadian authorities in 2005 following allegations that the company created child pornography. At that time, the website included "nudist" and "naturist" videos of children that did not violate free speech laws; however, in 2011, the videos became more explicit and the company's offices were raided.

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Full Answer

Following the raid, around 45 terabytes of movies were seized, and the company's owner, Brian Way, was arrested. American and Eastern European authorities became involved in the case to help reveal the identities of the company's customers. The United States Postal Service was able to help locate customers of the company, leading to their arrests, according to CNN.

In 2013, Project Spade netted 348 arrests with 108 in Canada, 76 in the United States and 164 in 92 other countries around the world. The suspects accused of possessing, distributing and creating the illegal images included members of the clergy, educators and doctors. Almost 400 children were rescued during the course of the investigation, and Azov Films was shut down, according to BBC.

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