Enlarge / A court order served on Austrian Tor operator William Weber.

An Austrian operator of Tor servers which were used to anonymously route huge amounts of traffic over the Internet has been charged with distributing child pornography after police detected illegal images traversing one of the nodes he maintains.

William Weber, a 20-year-old IT administrator in Graz, Austria, said nine officers searched his home on Wednesday after presenting him with a court order charging him with distribution and possible production of child pornography. The crimes carry penalties of as much as 10 years in prison. Police from the Styrian Landeskriminalamt, which has jurisdiction over the Austrian state of Styria, confiscated 20 computers, as well as a game console, iPads, external hard drives, USB thumb drives and other electronics. Evidence cited in the document showed that one of seven Tor Project exit nodes he operated transported illegal images.

“My storage cubes (HP MicroServers) were confiscated without any regard for the hardware—the power cords were simply ripped out, instead of properly shutting them down,” he wrote in a blog post published Thursday morning. “After finishing the search in my living room, they continued in my bedroom, where they confiscated my legal firearms, as well as my cable TV receiver, and my Xbox 360. Despite my statement that all firearms and ammunition were legally owned and registered, having passed all background checks, this was doubted by one of the LKA officers due to the caliber.”

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via Ars Technica » Technology Lab http://feeds.arstechnica.com/~r/arstechnica/technology-lab/~3/0Fwi06OZqFA/

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