The Yomiuri Shimbun
The spread of child pornography-related crime in recent years has been exacerbated by the ease with which both perpetrators and victims can access the Internet.
The trend has contributed to an uninterrupted increase in the number of victimized children in this country, despite ongoing international campaigns to root out child pornography, including sexually explicit photographs and graphic depictions of child abuse.
The number of child pornography victims has set new records each year in Japan, despite government moves to strengthen measures against child pornography. Experts are urging schoolteachers, administrators and parents to recognize the severity of the problem.
Shihoko Fujiwara, representative of Polaris Project Japan (www.polarisproject.jp), a nonprofit organization that provides support to children and women who are victims of sexual abuse and trafficking, said the number of child pornography and child prostitution cases detected in Japan has exceeded 5,000 annually, and that the number was rising year by year.
"One of the reasons for the increase is due to the crackdown [by authorities], but another is that a growing number of children have become involved in the business through the widespread use of the Internet," she said.
According to Fujiwara, a 14-year-old second-year female middle school student was forced to sell sexual services by her classmates and the scene was filmed by male customers.
Net facilitates spread of child porn : National : DAILY YOMIURI ONLINE (The Daily Yomiuri)