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Auckland Man Uses Honeypot To “Buy Girl on Darknet”: Now on Parole

Auckland Man Uses Honeypot To 22Buy Girl on Darknet22Now on Parole
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A man from Auckland, New Zealand, used the Darknet to find sex-trafficked women so he could abuse them. Operating under the alias ‘Kiwipedo’ on the darknet, he accessed a website that was actually a police sting operation. According to LE, the man specifically requested a younger girl. Hoping to use the dark web’s anonymity, he was communicating with website administrators. These were undercover agents carefully orchestrating a honeypot operation. But it seems his sentencing was light, as Aaron Joseph Hutton has been released on parole. Honeypots are clearly on the rise, but let’s look at how this Kiwi was captured.

Auckland Sex Trafficking Failure

Going back to July 2020, Auckland resident Aaron Joseph Hutton admitted to using the Dark Web, where he dealt with child sexual abuse images and tried to buy a girl under the age of 7. Using the alias ‘Kiwipedo’, he accessed various child exploitation forums on the dark web. Of course, he was operating anonymously and could easily engage in illegal activities.

But in this case, he failed to keep his OpSec in check, resulting in some drastic consequences he deserved. One of the main websites he used turned out to be a honeypot created by undercover agents from the Department of Internal Affairs (DIA).

Honeypots are traps set by law enforcement in the digital realm to catch criminals. In this case, authorities created a fake website on the dark web, designed to resemble platforms used by predators seeking illegal content or services. This decoy site was intricately crafted to attract and identify individuals involved in child exploitation. By engaging with users, law enforcement gathered crucial evidence and tracked their activities. This strategy is effective in penetrating the veil of anonymity typically afforded by the dark web, leading to the capture of individuals like Hutton.


Investigations started back in April 2015 when Hutton started a six-week conversation with an agent. After a lengthy operation where agents engaged with Hutton, building a case against him. Hutton discussed his desire to traffic children internationally and was even willing to pay up to US$15,000 for a child. He specifically mentioned looking for a girl under the age of 7. After a slight delay, Hutton claimed “As for the trafficking still keen just trying to organise my life so I can accept the item.” and that he was  “not wasting time” and was “serious!!!”

He went as far as to describe the notorious Austrian sex offender Josef Fritzl a “hero”. A man who kept his own daughter as a sex slave for 24 years in a cellar in their garden and fathered seven children with her. 

Kiwipedo Dark Web Pedophile

Hutton even went deep into his intentions, providing the DIA with enough evidence to take action. Using a tracing device, they located Hutton’s workplace, and eventually, a search warrant was executed. We’ve seen many arrested for accessing CP on the Darknet, but few taking the Sex Trafficking route.

During the search, they found over 400 images of children being sexually abused on his hard drives. These hard drives contained folders with disturbing titles like “Pure Evil & Darkness” and “Sick & Twisted,” which further incriminated him. He was clearly aware of his crimes. According to the investigation release, he also had a password-protected Excel file spreadsheet that had a number of worksheets called “next week’s funds, smokes, child payments” on the bottom and included a number of online accounts.


Despite all this evidence, Hutton got off very lightly. Hutton’s sentencing was based on the charges of attempting to contact and deal with an individual under the age of 18 for sexual exploitation and possessing 417 pieces of objectionable material. In 2020, during his trial, he pleaded guilty but claimed he had no true intention of purchasing the child. 

He claimed that he eventually figured out that he was speaking to Law Enforcement on the other side and used the chat rooms as “fantasy chats for excitement and arousal.”. He even claimed that he was “trolling the authorities” and “playing cat and mouse.” Judge Roberts didn’t take the bait and claimed this was “nonsense” and that it was clear he had a “dreadful purpose” of detaining a young girl to sexually exploit her.

As a result, in January 2021, Judge Allan Roberts sentenced Hutton to five years of imprisonment. A light sentence, according to many. But that was reduced on Dec 07 2022, to just three years in prison. Additionally, he was set to a child sex offender programme.

“Stopping the distribution of this type of material is critical because every time this material is shared, the children involved in this crime are re-victimized. We are acutely aware that persons consuming and distributing child sexual exploitation material also present significant risks to children in the offline world.”

Police Detective Sergeant Corey Brown

Parole Already For Auckland Man Who Tried to “Buy Girl on Darknet”

After completing the child sex offender programme, Hutton reappeared in court and claimed the programme was beneficial and had highlighted the factors behind his offending. Only now does he realise that a child could have been harmed by his actions.

“I have learnt that’s the wrong thoughts to have, It was a temporary sort of thing…a fleeting attraction… being on the dark web led to me into a rabbit hole of conspiracy theories.”

This plea and request for forgiveness was met with an easy release on parole. Hutton will abide by standard and special conditions and can not to contact people under the age of 16. Additionally he has restrictions on using internet-capable devices. Hutton will be released on January 8, 2024