Channel 4 will follow undercover detectives in new series (Picture: Getty Images/iStockphoto)
Channel 4 will follow undercover detectives in a new ‘hard-hitting’ series on how police catch paedophiles operating online.
The three-part documentary, which will air next month, will show how police pose as both adults in children in forums and chat rooms to identify criminals.
Speaking about the ‘timely and vitally important’ programme, Channel 4’s senior commissioning editor Alisa Pomeroy explained that because of the coronavirus pandemic, children are spending more time online.
‘As a direct result of Covid, millions of children are now stuck at home, bored, hidden away in their bedrooms and chatting online,’ she began.
‘Each potentially laying themselves open to the sinister practice of online grooming by an increasing number of would-be sexual abusers.’
The documentary will air next month (Picture: Getty Images)
In 2017, police rolled out a new strategy across England and Wales to catch paedophiles online using undercover police officers.
Programme-makers said the police teams featured in the programme have led the way in developing the tactic.
The National Crime Agency (NCA) has previously said that paedophiles are looking to exploit the coronavirus lockdown.
It will show how police pose as both adults in children in forums and chat rooms to identify criminals (Picture: Getty Images)
Police have also warned of a spike in abuse with schools closed and young people spending more time on the internet.
The documentary’s executive producer Joe Mather went on to explain that they wanted to tackle the ‘hard-hitting’ documentary with ‘great care and sensitivity’.
‘It’s been extraordinary to have been granted access to such a complex area of policing and to witness the work of undercover detectives as they go about searching for paedophiles operating online,’ he said.
‘What the child sexual abuse officers are witness to on a daily basis is truly horrific.’
‘Yet these detectives, often with children of their own, have to engage with the offenders in order to find and arrest them, knowing that for everyone they arrest there are countless more victims still at risk,’ he added.
Undercover Police: Hunting Paedophiles will air next month on Channel 4.