Info@NationalCyberSecurity
Info@NationalCyberSecurity

Man accused of corrupting minors online, goes on trial | #childpredator | #onlinepredator | #sextrafficing


Photo by : Viktoria Nikolla

A 32-year-old man has gone on trial, accused of corrupting three minors via webcam.

Ahmad Ali Younes Ikbal, a Libyan national with a fetish for feet, is indicted for allegedly having defiled three underaged minors – a boy and two girls – five years ago. At the the incident happened, the children were aged 12, 13 and 14.

He will face a trial without a jury after Mr Justice Aaron Bugeja upheld the man’s request, who wished to avail himself of this legal right.

Ikbal once again pleaded not guilty on Monday.

The Criminal Court imposed a ban on the publication of the names of the alleged victims and upheld a request that they will be allowed to testify via video link.

The man was arraigned after one of the children’s parents filed a police report that triggered a coordinated operation by the vice squad and the cybercrime unit to track down the suspected sexual predator.

Prosecutor Angele Vella explained that the man has a sexual fetish for children’s feet, and would use social media platforms such Instagram, Skype and Facebook, to trap his victims.

The man would use fake names and profiles, sometimes even posing as a woman, to make initial contact with the victims on Instagram, before then telling them to move to Skype.

On Skype, the accused would masturbate in full view of the alleged victim.

The court heard how the 12-year-old boy had been uncomfortable and had told the accused that he did not want to carry on, however, Ikbal had threatened to publish screen grabs from their conversation.

The boy was forced to meet online some four times, before the victim told his father. A police report was subsequently filed.

The accused had subsequently uploaded a screenshot of the boy, taken during the video chat, to Facebook and used it to draw in more children, Vella explained.

He had also sent a photo of his genitals to a 13-year-old girl, who saved the picture and informed her parents after attending a talk about online abuse given by the police at her school.

The police had traced Ikbal’s IP address and raided his house and seized electronic equipment including his phone, where they found a similar conversation with another girl, this time 14 years old.

Lawyers Angele Vella and Danika Vella are prosecuting on behalf of the Office of the Attorney General.

Lawyer Joe Brincat is assisting the accused.

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