Sex Offenders' Pixilated Faces. Not Any More.

Discussion in 'Current Affairs' started by Seadog, Oct 8, 2007.

Welcome to the Navy Net aka Rum Ration

The UK's largest and busiest UNofficial RN website.

The heart of the site is the forum area, including:

  1. Seadog

    Seadog War Hero Moderator

    Police techies have reverse-engineered disguised photographs of man sexually abusing children to obtain a series of useable pictures (of the offender only)

    Depixilate BBC

    Story was on the news at 1330. The point was made that if anyone thinks they know who he is, tell the police because if an innocent gets a kicking or worse, that'll undermine the initiative of posting his mugshot in the public domain. Until today, plod only circulated the photos in the law enforcement community. No joy.

    Please, no rants or cruel and unusual punishments for abusers.
  2. sgtpepperband

    sgtpepperband War Hero Moderator Book Reviewer

    I thought we weren't allowed to discuss ongoing investigations, as comments made could be prejudicial to the outcome of the court case?! :roll:
  3. I thought that was just military cases eg court martials?
  4. sgtpepperband

    sgtpepperband War Hero Moderator Book Reviewer

    Okay; just asking for clarity, before I incriminate myself... :thumbright:
  5. Seadog

    Seadog War Hero Moderator


    Nor can you libel anyone, although given the alleged unreleased contents of his own holiday snaps, that shouldn't be an issue. If matey turns out to be HMF then certain comment along the lines of; he always got excited when as killick of the fo'c'sle he was showing sea cadets the Seawolf launcher, would not be permitted.

    It is possible to develop this thread into a discussion of the technology and expertise available to police, inter agency/international co-operation, ethics of posting cropped photos of his activities as Interplod have done, what if the technology/technologists have got it wrong and so on. Those who can take the thread in that direction (Service police?) are invited to do so. Those wishing to be disruptive/rant/advocate Inquisition like punishment are invited to stay out
  6. At the risk of having my butt kicked, IF the investigation warrants it and the situation is such that it can go no further but if it doesn't then certain people are put at risk then I believe there is a good reason for the face to be published 'in the clear'! Possibly the wording may need to be vague (in case the person could actually be innocent - not all cases are clear cut) such as

    "Police urgently need to contact this person, anyone knowing them or their whereabout contact **** immediately"

    But like all things each case is individual and depends on every detail of the case, but if the technoligy is available serious consideration should be given to using it - it may not work every time nor be necessary, nor sensible!
  7. Leaving aside his preferences and practices, he's not overly bright. As the man said, if you rearrange the order of pixels, it's not overly difficult to arrange them back again. If he'd degraded the picture by randomly removing pixels, reconstruction would have needed so much interpolation that it would be useless. Clearly the people who make Crime Watch and the like know their stuff. I suppose if the pixels were removed randomly in each frame, a large number of similar frames might allow a sample rate sufficient to get back close to the truth.

    Funny, the subject always makes me think of Dartmoor.
  8. Seadog

    Seadog War Hero Moderator

    So the cops have been loafing all these years or is the point that it is easier to reverse the procedure now than hitherto because a method/program has been developed and set to work? Chester hasn't left his files open on (eg) Photoshop so the cops just click 'undo last'.

    Hopefully he is now dropping bricks and a name is coming to the attention of the police somewhere.
  9. As I suspect thi process used to mask the face retains the original pixels but simply arranges them according to the settings of some algorithm, once one has the algorithm and the setting the undo is quite easy.

    Of course after this no self respecting perve will use that type of identity cover up so I assume they felt this case serious enough to use their joker on.
  10. I think the point is that if the information is there it can be manipulated, and if it's been swirled then you've at least got a pretty good clue about how to manipulate the image, unless of course there are several effects overlayed on one another.

    If the information isn't there at all then it can't be recovered:

    Blank or overwrite a section then cut and paste into a different image frame.


    Modify the image then save it in a different format, then change it back again.


    Modify the image and put the whole thing through a couple of other translations.

    I was sitting in on a seminar in the US about 4 years ago, talking about recovering data from files, and there are several things you could do. For example M$ word tends to be littered with additional information even if you try to clean it up, so it's always worth putting it through a couple of transitions before you send it.

    As to the ethics of this, there is always a risk of identifying the wrong person, and it'll be interesting to see how this is tested in court. Defence could argue that the image having been tampered with isn't a reliable indicator of the identity of an individual, so a very clear audit trail is needed.

    There is also the risk of ending up with another Paediatrician incident.
  11. wet_blobby

    wet_blobby War Hero Moderator

  12. At least got a positive I.D....lets hope they jump on the fcuker and take him out!!..... :pukel:
  13. The simple way to get rid of all the history and hidden information from a word file is to convert to PDF, then all the recipient gets is an image of the page. We do that with most documents that leave the company and have done for some time.

    As for misidentification and stuff holding up in court I think they will be relying on other evidence to actually make the conviction, after all they only have to recover one unaltered image to make the connection, equally ther may well be other points of identification on hs body that were not altered to back up any identification evidence.
  14. We do the same, or where the client wants a word document we strip it and convert it before creating the final version.

    Material coming in to us, particularly bid and tender documents, generally get checked for any useful information left in the document.

    I have little problem with the legal process bringing in other evidence, but the tabloid media are rarely as rigorous, and given the passions raised by the crime it could quite easily bite back.
  15. I would question your use of rarely when refering to tabloid journalists rigour in collecting evidence, and would prefer 'never'. Certainly the brain dead vigilante is always a potential problem when such information is put into the public domain, but it does seem to have worked in this case.
  16. Fair point ;)

    I'll take myself round the corner for a bolloking.
  17. janner

    janner War Hero Book Reviewer

    BBC news have just named him, can't remember the name, but He is a Canadian.
  18. Seadog

    Seadog War Hero Moderator

    If it is him, hopefully it won't be long until he's cuffed and put on trial (in Thailand). I'd hate to be some poor bastard that just looks a bit like Chester the Molester and suffer the consequences of a tabloids' and ignoramuses' feeding frenzy. The airport camera photo isn't conclusive to a casual observer (too bald at the front-not just shaven-no laughing at the back) but of course the incriminating pictures may be quite old. And if it is him, he'll be a tad stressed, not good for the barnet.
  19. He's been nicked. Shooting at dawn anyone? (what's dawn done?)
  20. Seadog

    Seadog War Hero Moderator

    BBC-Suspect Arrested

    Even if it turns out he's not guilty of molesting smally boys he should be locked up for those sunglasses. He's putting on a brave face ( a fair cop guv face perhaps) but I bet he's wishing a few of his lifestyle choices were different.

    The Royal Thai Police must be very chuffed with themselves, so they should be.

Share This Page