It's part of a local effort called "Operation Blue Monday". At least nine different agencies in central Illinois collaborated for the investigation. Detectives and investigators have been looking into this since the summer. They've been using softwares and programs to identify individuals who possess and traffic child pornography.
The group were recognized by the U.S. Department of Justice Thursday. Jim Lewis with the department says by working together, the agencies were able to get more evidence and build stronger cases. It's also been able to help them make more arrests. In the last five months, they've been able to indict eight different people in Central Illinois with child pornography charges. If convicted, they could face up to 20 years in prison.
"It gets to the level, that every Monday, nine of ten of them were in the chief's conference room going over search warrants," said Urbana Police Chief Pat Connolly. "It was abundantly clear they were passionate about trying to do the right thing."
Detectives say, in the last year, the number of people in the area involved with child pornography has gone down.