A dog trained to find memory devices recently helped nab a suspected pedophile in Mexico City and is receiving a lot of praise.
A Netherlands-based organization that combats human trafficking notified an American activist group that a Dutchman, who has advocated for sex with children, fled pending court cases in the Netherlands, the Associated Press (AP) reported Wednesday.
It appeared the suspect thought he could do whatever he wanted in Mexico City but failed to factor in Hidu, who recently learned to sniff out triphenylphosphine oxide (TPPO), a substance used as a chemical coating for certain electronics.
Evelien Hölsken, who heads up the organization called Free a Girl, said it contacted Operation Underground Railroad (OUR) about opening an investigation into the matter.
Workers with OUR created a plan to lure the suspect via chat rooms and social media, and it did not take long before Mexico City prosecution detectives were at the scene when he arrived at a local bus station near a park on June 5.
In a social media post on June 6, OUR shared video footage of the suspect’s arrest.
“On Sunday, Mexico City authorities arrested Nelson Maatman, an alleged child predator who was suspected of sexually exploiting children,” the organization said:
ARREST UPDATE: On Sunday, Mexico City authorities arrested Nelson Maatman, an alleged child predator who was suspected of sexually exploiting children. Thanks to @freeagirl, Mexican authorities, and our own K9 Hidu for making this arrest possible. https://t.co/B0AWUQ9sDa pic.twitter.com/SKS3tFEGqG
— Operation Underground Railroad (@OURrescue) June 7, 2022
This week, OUR praised Hidu and said the dog recently graduated from the Jordan Detection K9 program.
“The search of Maatman’s apartment was Hidu’s very first case, as well as first international investigation that any O.U.R.-sponsored ESD K9’s has worked on,” the group wrote:
Meanwhile, Prosecutor Ernestina Godoy reported that Maatman had a pistol and cocaine. The suspect is being held at a Mexico City prison on charges of human trafficking, drug, and weapons possession.
Officials used surveillance footage to trace the suspect’s path to an apartment. Law enforcement later obtained a search warrant, and Hidu quickly got to work.
There was reportedly a cellphone lying in a laundry basket, and the dog alerted to it, also finding some hard drives in areas hard for humans to detect.
“Prosecutors said the drives and devices contained about 4 terabytes of child sexual abuse material,” the AP report concluded.