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11 Aug, 2017 16:32

Target of 'pedophile hunters' takes own life days after sting operation

Target of 'pedophile hunters' takes own life days after sting operation

Police are investigating the suicide of a man who was questioned over claims by ‘pedophile hunters’ that he sent explicit images to decoy underage girls.

The group, ‘Silent Justice,’ describes itself as exposing suspected pedophiles across Ireland and Britain by posing as underage girls and boys online, and arranging to meet people who make sexual advances towards them.

The 50 year old was confronted by the group at his County Antrim home last weekend after allegedly sending explicit photos of himself to members of the group who were posing as underage girls.

A spokesman for Silent Justice told RT the group suspected that the man in question was in contact with real young children, and decided as a team to “expose” him “sooner rather than later.”

The group streamed the doorstep confrontation live on their Facebook page, with the man denying making any contact with anyone purporting to be a 14-year-old girl.

In the hour-long livestream, since removed from Facebook, the group places him under citizen’s arrest and call the police. The man was reportedly arrested that day and released on bail a short time later.

READ MORE: Pedophile who posed as rapper to groom girls on social media jailed for 16yrs

The group expressed their “heartfelt sympathy” for the family of the deceased though a statement issued to RT.com, but called the suicide a “gutless way of being served justice.”

A Silent Justice spokesman went on to deny having any responsibility for the man’s death, claiming it was the duty of the police to identify any potential suicide risk.

"We are in no way responsible for [redacted man's] death...we are responsible for saving more childrens lives from this predator," read the statement.

A spokesman for the PSNI confirmed to RT.com that they are investigating the sudden death of a 50-year-old Antrim man, however the circumstances are not thought to be suspicious.