Greek children’s book author charged with child pornography videos

ATHENS — An award-winning Greek children’s book author charged with possessing internet child pornography has downloaded the videos from a book project, his defense lawyer has said.

Vassilis Papatheodorou, 53, was arrested and taken into custody in the southern city of Tripoli after an investigation by the Greek Police Cyber ​​Crime Division.

He came, the Newsbomb site said, after reports were received from unnamed foreign police sources, leading prosecutors to allow police to search his home and two computer hard drives where pornography was allegedly found. discovery.

More than 90 child pornography videos were found, including some featuring children under the age of 12, according to reports, but his lawyer Stavros Georgopoulos allegedly said his client used specific software to bulk download files once without preview.

He said Papatheodorou didn’t watch the videos and didn’t know the content and was upset that he was charged, but didn’t say how his client wouldn’t know what he has. bought.

The author’s publisher, Kastaniotis, said he ceased all collaboration with him “as soon as he was informed that a criminal investigation was underway by the judicial authorities for a serious accusation”. He headed the children’s department of Kastaniotis.

Papatheodorou has won several awards for his illustrated children’s books and teenage novels, including the Greek State Prize for Children’s Literature in 2008 and 2010.

He was one of 251 nominees revealed for Sweden’s Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award 2023, but the Hellenic Author’s Society said it had withdrawn him from the competition for “outstanding contribution to literature for children and young adults”.

Grover Z. Barnes