The Arizona Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force is comprised of investigators from City, County, State, and Federal Agencies. Special emphasis is placed on locating, prosecuting, and imprisoning people who intentionally exploit children. Lead by the Phoenix Police Department's Internet Crimes Against Children Unit, the AZICAC Task Force diligently pushes to fulfill this goal with highly trained and professional investigators and cutting edge forensics and technology.
The Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force program helps state and local law enforcement agencies develop an effective response to cyber enticement and child pornography cases. This help encompasses forensic and investigative components, training and technical assistance, victim services, and community education.
Launched in 1998, the Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force Program (ICAC Program), started with only 10 Task Forces across the United States, but today it is a network of 61 coordinated Task Forces representing more than 3,000 Federal, state and local law enforcement and prosecutorial agencies. These agencies are engaged in reactive, proactive, and forensic investigations, and criminal prosecutions.
By helping state and local agencies to develop effective, sustainable responses to online child victimization and child pornography, OJJDP has increased their capacity to address Internet crimes against children.
The ICAC Program was developed in response to the increasing number of children and teenagers using the Internet, the proliferation of child pornography, and heightened online activity by predators seeking unsupervised contact with potential underage victims. The Fiscal Year 1998 Justice Appropriations Act (Pub, L. No. 105–119) directed OJJDP to create a national network of state and local law enforcement cyber units to investigate cases of child sexual exploitation which resulted in the creation of the ICAC Task Force Program. In addition, The PROTECT Our Children Act of 2008 provided for the development of a national strategy to combat child exploitation and established long-range goals for preventing child exploitation.
ARIZONA ICAC RECEIVES ATTORNEY GENERAL’S AWARD
On May 25th, 2016 members of the Arizona Internet Crimes Against Children (AZICAC) Task Force were recognized by United States Attorney General Loretta E. Lynch as recipients of the 2015 Attorney General’s Special Commendation Award in Washington, DC.
The Attorney General’s Special Commendation Award recognizes the extraordinary efforts of an ICAC task force, an ICAC affiliate agency, or an individual assigned to an ICAC task force or affiliate agency for making a significant investigative or program contribution. This award presentation is held once each year and the Phoenix Police Department/AZICAC Task Force was selected from 61 other ICAC units in the nation as the recipient for their efforts with the following investigation:
In 2015, members of the Phoenix Police Department’s AZ ICAC task force received a “Cybertip” regarding the upload of Child Sexually Exploitive images. The resulting investigation located the primary suspect, and rescued two children from additional abuse and exploitation. The investigation revealed an additional suspect in the UK, and resulted in the rescue of a child in his care who was being abused and exploited. Suspects from several states across the country were identified and charged as a result of this investigation.
Based on these extraordinary efforts and outstanding work, the AZICAC/Phoenix Police Department was selected to receive the 2015 Attorney General’s Special Commendation Award in Washington, DC.
"The selfless and heroic acts that we recognize today are proof that vigilance and compassion can stand as bulwarks against the dangers faced by our children," said Attorney General Lynch. "I am inspired by the courage of our award recipients and proud to stand with them as we work for a safer and more just future for the young people of America."