Hacker Takes Down Pedophile Ring, Brings Child Predators to Justice

A “white hat hacker” has used his skills for good by taking down an online pedophile ring and bringing the child predators to justice.

Ryan Montgomery, also dubbed 0day, is not the typical hacker who uses computer manipulation to commit crimes.

Instead, Montgomery is more of a vigilante who catches bad guys.

Montgomery is what’s known as a white hat hacker, or ethical hacker.

The 29-year-old cyber prodigy from Pennsylvania went from causing mischief online to helping authorities dismantle child predator networks.

This stepping from the shadows into the light was spurred on by a text message he received from a distressed friend in 2020.

But his journey into cyberspace began much earlier.

Montgomery began hacking in the days of Napster and AOL at age 11.

The web landscape looked far different then.

You couldn’t just Google it and go from “zero to hero” mastering cyber skills like today.

“It was chat rooms and just who you knew,” Montgomery told The Epoch Times.

“Asking questions, and not just asking questions but asking the right questions.”

It was having the “mindset of a hacker, where you want to take something apart and put it back together and make it do something it wasn’t supposed to do,” he added.

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Ultimately, hackers look beyond the graphical user interface, or GUI, to figure out how to exploit a system or software.

Where your average user sees only the tools displayed on AOL, for instance, hackers spot less obvious things like peer-to-peer connections, presenting IP addresses ripe to be exploited or attacked.

Some have hailed Montgomery as the world’s number one hacker.

But his heart was good.

He would use his tech-savvy skillset to protect businesses by creating his own cybersecurity firm with his partners.

Getting a text from said friend in late 2020, a switch flipped in his brain.

And with unbridled fervor, he set about clandestinely dogging a depraved network preying on children.

The hacker would have justice.

Montgomery stared at his phone in shock and felt sick to the stomach.

He was at a friend’s house when he got the text and probably would have lost his lunch, were it not still morning.

“PLEASE! This is an all-pedo site sharing videos of little girls, talking about how they raped and abused children,” it read.

It continued, “Felt sick after reading that stuff on his website.

“These people all need to be found!”

There was a link to the website “Rapey.co.”

There were screenshots of three children in bathing suits with the wording of the darkest carnality.

“I got dibs on the one in the middle,” read the description, next to which there was a tag, “Pick One for Yourself.”

Captions such as “gently grooming her” and phrases too sickening to publish accompanied horrific images and videos.

In that instant, Montgomery was triggered to take immediate action in the most effective way he knew how.

Leaving his friend’s house, he got on the website and found a way to exfiltrate data en mass, collecting usernames, incriminating threads, and descriptions of acts beyond the pale.

Day in and day out, he worked, until he had a compelling stockpile of evidence.

He did not lift photos from the site, as he knew that was illicit material.

With this ample ammunition in hand, he contacted NCMEC, the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, via their child pornography cyber tipline and sent over the damning database.

“I never heard anything from them,” Montgomery told the newspaper, though he found it “ironic” what recently came out in a press release.

Shortly after his hacking, there were arrests.

“[F]rom around September to December 2020, Christopher William Kuehner, 38, was a prominent member of the website Rapey.su,” read a Department of Homeland Security press statement, dated January 2023.

“Kuehner repeatedly induced and enticed minor girls to produce child sexual abuse material for both him and the other members of the website. …

“Kuehner faces a mandatory minimum of 20 years in prison when sentenced on April 25.”

Three other individuals—Jacob Royce Mullins, 20; Kyle William Leishear, 43; and Matthew Martin, 25—also pleaded guilty to their roles in the child exploitation operation.

Going after Rapey.co whetted Montgomery’s appetite for justice, but he wasn’t done.

He continued hunting down sickos online by teaming up with a friend to build an organization for exposing them and locking them up.

Eventually, their work went viral.

After getting noticed on Instagram, they were contacted by like-minded parties, including seasoned investigator Project Veritas, whose undercover network of journalists frequently lifts the lid with bombshell exposés.

Oddly, despite his blanket outreach to all major news networks—from NBC to ABC, from Newsmax to CNN to Fox—no other media touched the story.

Journalists who seemed interested never bit.

Only Project Veritas did.

“They uncovered about 500 people so far,” Montgomery said, adding it’s “one hundred percent guaranteed there are people behind the user names.”

The hacker has his ways of knowing, though certain things he’s “not allowed to talk about.”

Not long after hacking Rapey.co, Montgomery learned the man who ran the website, Nathan Larson, had also been arrested.

“He was arrested with a 12-year-old girl at a layover—that he kidnapped and raped,” Montgomery said.

That did make the news, as Larson was a well-known politician who ran for Congress twice and advocated legalizing child pornography.

He has since died in prison.

Montgomery was spurred on further by Larson’s arrest.

“If he had been stopped the moment that I reported it, [the 12-year-old girl’s rape] never would have happened,” he had thought.

“What about the other boatload of users on this website?”

Learning of Larson and his 12-year-old victim pushed Montgomery to join forces with certain, er, vigilante groups that target these vile networks operating in the underbelly of society.

Similar to “Dateline: To Catch a Predator,” these groups employ women decoys who pretend to be children to catch pedophiles.

They play along as they are “groomed” before springing the trap.

“I got into [assisting them] because I wanted to help put more of these guys behind bars,” Montgomery said.

“I didn’t feel like I had any support from law enforcement prior to taking it into my own hands, and [I wanted to] help as many people as I possibly could.”

On the Shawn Ryan Show podcast, the hacker demonstrated just how dangerous these sites are.

And how quickly a predator can zero in.

“Just opening up a chat room and saying that I’m 13 years old and saying ‘hi,’ there was about, what, 14 messages in the chat room?” he told The Epoch Times.

“And one of them was a man in his 40s.”

The “vigilante” groups’ weakness was they couldn’t connect usernames with real people, phone numbers, workplaces, etc.

“That’s kind of where my skills came in,” Montgomery said.

“Where somebody just made a username or a fake username with a picture, I would be sending [the vigilante group] information about that person, along with where they work, and their family members, and other information.”

For the past three years, Montgomery has been waging cyber warfare against monsters and has seen things far worse than we have revealed in this article.

The armor of God protects him.

“I believe God knew that I had the ability to do it,” he said.

“And even though I had a hard time stomaching it, I can push through.”

But the war isn’t over. He continues performing his task, but cannot say what, for that would jeopardize the mission’s success.

“It’s not over,” he said, adding that he is helped by a strong support network.

“I have a strong faith in God as well, so I’m not going to stop any time soon. If you’re a predator or a pedophile, I’m coming for you, and, hopefully, a lot more than just me is coming for you.”

Cryptically, he added, “I’m limited in what I’m allowed to say, but a lot is coming.”

READ MORE: DeSantis Signs New Law to Begin Executing Pedophiles in Florida

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By Frank Bergman

Frank Bergman is a political/economic journalist living on the east coast. Aside from news reporting, Bergman also conducts interviews with researchers and material experts and investigates influential individuals and organizations in the sociopolitical world.

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