Press Releases

UNODC Strengthens Caribbean Capacity to Prevent Online Child Sexual Abuse and Exploitation

UNODC Strengthens Caribbean Capacity to Prevent Online Child Sexual Abuse and Exploitation

Trinidad and Tobago, May 22nd-23rd, 2024 – The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), through the Global Cybercrime Programme under the project, “Tackling Cybercrime: Strengthening Legislation, Law Enforcement, and International Cooperation (Phase III),” funded by the United Kingdom (UK), and in collaboration with the Caribbean Telecommunications Union (CTU), held a “Regional Meeting of communication regulators of the Caribbean and the private sector to discuss proactive actions to prevent online child sexual abuse and exploitation and develop standards of collaboration in countering this crime”. Participants came from the Public and Private Sectors from 11 Caribbean countries (Barbados, Belize, Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, Montserrat, St. Kitts and Nevis, St. Maarten, Suriname, Trinidad and Tobago and Turks and Caicos).  

The collective and invaluable participation in these initiatives involved 54 professionals from National Telecommunications Regulatory Commissions, the Trinidad and Tobago Police Service (specifically from the Cyber and Social Unit, the Department of Special Victims, the Child Protection Unit, and the Financial Investigation Unit), the Ministry of Attorney General and Legal Affairs (AGLA), Trinidad and Tobago, INTERPOL, technical advisers of the communication regulators, CTU Member States, operators (including Internet service providers), the private sector, CARICOM IMPACS, and international experts from the UK, Homeland Security of the USA (HSI-ICE), UNICRI, Chain Analysis, Western Union, Binance, former police officers from the USA and UNODC.

During the opening ceremony, we were honoured to have addresses by the Secretary-General of the CTU, Mr. Rodney Taylor and a video message from Mrs. Harriet Cross, the British High Commissioner to Trinidad & Tobago. Mr. Kevin Aston from the British High Commission and Ms. Lourdes Gutiérrez, the Regional Coordinator for Central America and the Caribbean from the UNODC Global Programme on Cybercrime, also attended and their support and guidance has been instrumental in this initiative.

The objective was to enhance international cooperation at regional and international levels, including with the private sector; promote the exchange of best practices; and increase the ability to detect and respond to the risks and threats of transnational online child sexual abuse and exploitation, as well as other severe forms of cybercrime.