From Finland in the investigation of child abuse on the other end of the world help? This is not possible. The case of Olli, an architect and managing Director from Helsinki.

In the past one and a half years, the European police Agency has released more than 100 photos on the Internet, from child porn images. They show, for example, clothing, furniture, or landscapes. The hope of the investigators is that somewhere in the world, any Internet user is familiar with these objects, or the appropriate area or you can do to get on the track of the offender and the victim and to prevent further suffering. (Read here in the star more to the Europol project “Stop Child Abuse – Trace in Object.”)

An architect from Finland identified the place

In October of last year, Europol has released two recordings, apparently from the roof of a building. “In this city, presumably in Asia, has abused a child sexually. Do you recognize this city? Investigators need the Information to track down the criminal and rescue a victim,” wrote the authority for Twitter to the photos.


These recordings published by Europol in October of last year, among other things, in the case of Twitter


One of the Thousands viewing the pictures of the aft was Olli. In an Interview with the British BBC and several Tweets he told about how he identified in laborious and small-scale work, the location of the recordings.

To start with, he set on Asia, and then an Overview gives. “I threw a quick glance at all the Asian countries, to see their style of architecture.” For some Tools such as “Google Streetview” or its counterparts from other countries or from other companies.

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Because some of the buildings are built in the Background, in the “Soviet style”, he suspected a Communist country. Thus, he limits the possible States to three. “It was clear to me that it is a big city, however, not to be the center of it.” China only had several cities, which did not fit in his Grid, and so the architect took the “middle Kingdom” more precisely.

In the further localization have helped the survey in the Background of the images. “In the middle of the city there is a 20 to 40-Meter high verdant hill.” To recognize is that there is a road from the building that leads on the the shots were taken in the direction of the hill. “Of your other streets at a 90-degree angle,” says Olli. In the Background, about five miles distance him further surveys to be noticed. He looked at the recognizable buildings in the area. “Then I have drawn by Hand a map that shows how the area would have to from the top.” This he had shared in the Internet and notes from users.

patience, diligence, skill and a bit of luck?

With this information, he was using satellite images, the entire coastal region of China with its many large cities examined and, initially, Macau and Beijing under the magnifying glass – in vain. The structure of the building did not fit. Next stop: the million city of Shenzhen. “You seemed to me to be the most likely city due to its architecture and its geography.” Also other users had expressed the assumption that the pictures had been taken in Shenzhen. “Three to four hours, I looked at the surroundings of the hills in the city.” Then he had discovered the place, as the Finn is evidenced in a Tweet.

“Hello, Europol”, he wrote, the authority and named the exact coordinates. “The hill fits, the roof fits in the surrounding buildings to match, the road fits. I would 99.9% say. Can you please confirm that you will see this.”

Also by Mail and by telephone, the architect Europol is informed. There you thanked me for the note. Since the authority does not have its own investigative powers in China, have you given the note to the local police. As the case ran out in the end, is not known. Further investigations could drag on for months, Europol.

in Total, he has invested 15 to 20 hours of work, explains the Finn, with a little diligence, skill and possibly some luck . “Great Job!”, “Europol should offer you a permanent position”, were some of the reactions on Twitter.

The Finn, however, remains modest: “The search was fun for me, I would do it again any time.” In detail, the Online research platform “Bellingcat” (in English) describes the procedure Ollis, and other Users in the case. In Germany, first of all, the Portal “Watson had reported” the success of the Finns.

Also, you can Europol assist

The principle according to which it is addressed, under the term “Open Source Intelligence” (OSINT) is known. It describes the procedure to use for the extraction of Information from freely available open sources and the knowledge to put together.

Also, the star is using the OSINT method regularly in his research, most recently in a large scale and in cooperation with the “Bellingcat” and other media in the project “GermanArms”. We were able to prove using publicly available information, that the German weapons in Yemen-war, while the Federal government’s truth claims contrary to that they have no knowledge or your Knowledge is holding back.

also Want to help you with Europol, child abuse? Currently, the authority has published around two dozen images, to which you notes: do you Know where a particular piece of clothing is sold? You can detect a particular Region? These and other questions to investigators. Notes you take on your website (click here on the photo, then a contact form) opens. Also, every police station in Germany for any information about the objects or places. Click through the images:

search action: Where were taken these pictures? Help Europol, child abuse Fullscreen

the project “Sto educate p Child Abuse – Trace on the Object” wants to bring the European police authority, Europol, Internet users in the fight against child abuse. Can you answer questions about the pictures?

To ask this photo Europol: Where is the swing?


sources: Europol, the BBC, the “Bellingcat”, Olli on Twitter “Watson”