‘The publication and/or sharing of intimate images without consent is a criminal offence’
In a statement to the Sunday World, a Garda spokesperson said: “An Garda Síochána in the Eastern Region is investigating a number of reports concerning the posting, sharing and uploading of personal images online.
“The publication and/or sharing of intimate images without consent is a criminal offence. Any person who is concerned that they have been a victim following the uploading of personal explicit imagery online without their consent, at any time, should contact their local Garda Station.”
Last week it emerged that images of more than 200 women, largely thought to be based in Wexford, has been compiled on an anonymised Snapchat account.
Of approximately 50 females who have been identified as having had their images illegally shared, some are still said to be underage, necessitating the involvement of Tusla.
While the majority are aged 21 to 23, the ages of those involved stretch right up to 40.
Gardai said they are not aware of any attempts to extort money from those photographed, however, some women suggested that they were told their images would be removed from the account in exchange for images of other girls.
Local Sinn Féin councillor Tom Forde recently raised the issue with Gardaí, having recognised a number of the women’s names on the “list” of over 200 names published on the anonymous Snapchat account.
He told the Wexford People newspaper that a number of women involved had informed him that they would have been underage when these photos were taken.“There were a lot of names on this list and a lot of them were known to me. “People have come to me since and stated that they were underage at the time these photos were taken.
“In some of these pictures, they still would have been in school at the time.
“I’ve asked advice from the gardaí on this and I would stress that anyone who has concerns should contact the garda station immediately and don’t be afraid or embarrassed to come forward.”