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Child pornography arrests on the rise in Utah

FILE - In this April 19, 2016, file photo, Utah Gov. Gary Herbert looks up during a ceremonial signing of a state resolution declaring pornography a public health crisis, at the Utah State Capitol, in Salt Lake City. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer, File)

MORGAN SMITH Associated Press

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Investigators say child pornography arrests have nearly doubled in Utah over the last five years, mirroring a nationwide trend.

Experts say rapid technological developments are making it easier for people to find the images and also helping investigators catch violators.

Commander Jessica Farnsworth of Utah’s Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force says in 2013 they arrested 133 people accused of downloading child pornography. Last year her unit arrested 226 people on such charges.

Child pornography crimes have been increasing throughout the country. The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children said they received over 18 million reports of possible cases in 2018, compared to 10 million reports in 2017.

Vice-president John Shehan credits a law requiring companies to report child pornography with an influx of new reports.