A 26-year-old man has been sentenced to 106 years in prison for soliciting nude photos of underage girls over a three-year period, starting in 2014.
The man, identified only by his surname Lin (?), was convicted of illicitly enticing 81 girls, some as young as 8 years, into taking nude and obscene photos and sending them to him via social media platforms, such as LINE, BeeTalk and Facebook, the Taiwan High Court said in its ruling.
He was also found guilty of molesting a teenage girl after luring her to a hotel under false pretenses.
Those actions were carried out between May 2014 and July 2017, and Lin was expelled from a post-graduate program at National Taiwan University's (NTU) College of Medicine when the first allegations surfaced in 2017, the court said.
At the time, a 15-year-old girl accused Lin of luring her into sending him nude photos of herself so that both of them could "enjoy each other's body," the court said in its ruling.
It was later found that Lin had been carrying out similar actions since 2014, using a fake name and profile image to lure some 81 underage girls and share their nude photos with other child pornographers, according to the ruling.
Citing the statements of several victims, the court said that once the girls sent the first photos, Lin would then solicit other pictures, threatening to expose the girls' actions to their families and others if they refused.
When he was first arrested in 2017 and prosecuted in the Taipei District Court, he confessed to all the charges against him and was sentenced to three years in prison for violating the Child and Youth Sexual Exploitation Prevention Act, and to four months for molestation.
In its sentencing, the Taipei District Court said several actions that infringe on the same law are considered legally as one offense.
The Taiwan High Court, in the appeal case filed by prosecutors, upheld the lower court's four-month sentence for the molestation offense.
The high court ruled, however, that Lin had committed 82 separate crimes against the Child and Youth Sexual Exploitation Prevention Act, and it handed down a combined sentence of 106 years and 10 months, citing the large number of victims.
All of the rulings can be appealed, according to the high court.
Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel