The Child Exploitation and Online Protection command within the UK National Crime Agency (NCA) organised in Bucharest this week a capability development workshop on investigating child sexual abuse and exploitation (CSAE), according to the British Embassy in Romania.The workshop was organised to address a clear and present danger as identified by the Bucharest Police Department following the identification of children working in the sex industry within the Old Town area in Bucharest.
As many as 43 participants from across the Romanian National Police, Bucharest Police, Labour Ministry and the Justice Ministry took part in the week long workshop organised by the Child Exploitation Online Command (CEOP) Unit within the National Crime Agency (NCA) which leads on the UK response in protecting children on/off line.
The workshop included both classroom and tactical work to generate a clear understanding of current practices, challenges and opportunities across the departments responsible for responding to this threat in the UK and in Romania.
A field visit was organised to meet with charity sector workers dealing with victims, and to visit an area where most of the victims come from.
The participants also observed a tactical deployment by the Bucharest Police where several disruptions were carried out on identified establishments.
This was followed up by a series of debriefs aimed at shaping future collaboration between the UK and Romania.
The organisers said that "understanding the threat posed by CSAE and responding to the threat better as a united global community can be achieved through well-established and refined networks, protocol and practices, which in turn will generate greater reporting, which will help generate traction regionally to combat CSAE."
The workshop was hosted by the British Embassy in Bucharest, and opening it were British Ambassador Andrew Noble, Secretary of State Norocel Pompiliu Stroe, Deputy Head of the Bucharest Police Radu Gavris, and the Head of the NCA office in Bucharest.