Columnist Hasan Suroor, a British journalist of Indian origin, has been formally arrested following a video sting operation by an anti-paedophile group.
“A 65-year-old man has been charged with meeting a child following sexual grooming and is due to appear at Westminster Magistrates’ Court today, Wednesday November 12. Hasan Suroor, of Sloane Avenue, Kensington and Chelsea, was arrested by British Transport Police officers at Deptford Bridge DLR station on Monday, November 9,” a spokesperson for British Transport Police told HuffPost India.
Suroor was arrested after a video posted on the vigilante group’s Facebook page showed its members confronting Suroor, 65, after he purportedly traveled from Chelsea to Deptford in London on November 9 to meet a 14-year-old girl.
In the video, members of the vigilante group, Unknown TV, can be heard confronting Suroor with evidence of his conversations with the girl indicating clear plans for a sexual encounter.
“Look I tried to tell her that…I’m very old. I didn’t say I want to have sex, I said I leave it up to you entirely,” Suroor can be heard saying.
Further, he repeatedly asks the members of the group to ‘forgive’ him and says, “I’m not denying (it)…can you let me go with a warning?”
The columnist does not deny the group’s accusations that he had sexual conversations with a girl he thought was a minor. However, there is no proof of an actual sexual encounter involving Suroor.
Groups such as Unknown TV have been in operation in the US and UK. Members pose as minors on dating and social networking sites and watch for adult men who solicit sex with minors. When men travel for such encounters, they are confronted by members posing as police and the exchange is taped and subsequently posted online.
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