A man who allegedly threatened to kill dozens of girls if they didn’t pose nude for him in front of a webcam was charged on Friday by the district court in Uppsala.
The 33-year-old suspect has been charged with perpetrating a widespread web-based assault on more than 60 girls aged between 11- and 20-years-old who live all across the country.
Some of the 65 charges filed against the man include aggravated child exploitation through sexual posing, raping a child, and sexual coercion.
The man targeted his victims using internet chat sites popular with Swedish young people, later mapping out the locations of both girls and their close relatives, according to the Upsala Nya Tidningen (UNT) newspaper.
After making direct contacting the girls via internet chats, the 33-year-old would then force them to strip or perform sexual acts by threatening to harm or kill them and their relatives.
The investigation has been carried out in strict secrecy, and even large sections of the indictment have been classified.
Nevertheless, prosecutor Thomas Bälter Nordenman elected to hold a press conference on Friday to reveal some of the details uncovered by the police’s investigation.
According to reports from the girls, as well as their friends and families, the 33-year-old father of two told the girls he would come and kill them if they didn’t do as he said.
“Most of the girls the man exploited and threatened are 15-years-old. He sought out the girls systematically on the internet and has been very crafty,” said Bälter Nordenman, according to the TT news agency.
According to the prosecutor, the suspect recorded all of the sequences in which the girls had posed nude and performed sexual acts and saved the clips on his computer.
“But we have no evidence that the man spread the films further,” said the prosecutor.
Many of the victims have been terrified, convinced that the 33-year-old was prepared to carry out his death threats.
“There still may be a large number of unreported cases,” said Bälter Nordenman
“We believe he’s molested significantly more girls than whose we know of already.”
Police were able to crack the case after the man was accused of raping a 14-year-old girl from the Stockholm area who he had known previously, rather than through an encounter on the internet.
Shortly thereafter, a girl from western Sweden contacted police to say a man had contacted her on the internet and forced her to perform sex acts in front of a webcam.
After tracing the IP-address, investigators then discovered that the accused rapist and the webcam molester were the same man, according to UNT.
The 33-year-old was arrested in December and has been in custody ever since while police and prosecutors have carried out their investigations.
In the 1990s, the man was convicted for similar crimes in which he persuaded girls to perform sexual acts over the telephone.
The man’s trial is expected to begin in early June, and is expected to include testimony from all of his victims.