Cybersex Predator Suspect 'Warned' Over Targeting Young Muslim Women
Federal police have raided a home and "warned" a suspect who it claimed was using Instagram to manipulate young Australian Muslim girls into sharing explicit and degrading images of themselves.
10 daily revealed last year that dozens of teenage girls who followed modest clothing retailer Hijab House on Instagram had fallen victim to an online predator, who pretended to work as a modelling agent for the business.
In direct messages, the impersonator claimed to be a female modelling scout, and asked girls to send photos and video of themselves, with a promise they would be sent packages of clothing from Hijab House in return.
In many cases, once the girls sent either their address for the package to be delivered or photographs of themselves, they were blackmailed into sending more explicit material.
"The AFP can confirm it conducted enquiries into this matter, and a search warrant was executed," the Australian Federal Police told 10 daily in a statement.
"The suspect was warned by the AFP about the use of social media as a method to contact females at random and the use of inappropriate messages."
"The AFP considers this matter finalised."
In one case a 13-year-old girl was blackmailed into posing in her bedroom with a dirty sock in her mouth while sniffing her mother's shoes. The image was then circulated to her friends.
In another incident, a girl's image ended up on a pornographic website.
Hijab House has shops in both Sydney and Melbourne and enjoys a vast following on social media.
The company's owner told 10 daily last year that he believed up to 900 Instagram followers of Hijab House had been targeted, and said he knew of 50 who had fallen victim to the scammer.