The age of the victim plays a crucial role for the legal implications concerning pornography. Judges therefore often call on forensic experts to verify the age of individuals depicted on photographs or videos. However, there is no scientifically established protocol available for forensic practice in such cases. The conventional methods such as the evaluation of secondary sexual characteristics provide unsatisfactory results particularly when the legally relevant ages for child pornography (i.e. 14 and 18 years) are concerned. To overcome these limits, a European research group has explored the applicability of facial proportions as an age indicator on images. In this pilot study, standardized facial images of 353 females and 20 males from four age groups (6, 10, 14 and 18 years) were randomly selected for the metric analysis from a large data set including German, Italian and Lithuanian subjects. In this sample, several indices extracted from the frontal and lateral photographs were closely correlated to their respective indices taken from the living individuals. Furthermore, age-related changes were identified for indices taken from the photographs. The discriminant analysis showed that for the pooled sample, 60.3% of the cases were correctly classified into the respective age group. The percentage of correctly classified cases increased in the respective country samples as follows: 69.9% for Germany, 69.4% for Lithuania and 80.5% for Italy. The present study suggests that the metric assessment of the face may be used for age estimation on images. Nonetheless, more work needs to be done in order to verify the reliability of these findings on a large sample.

Can facial proportions taken from images be of use for ageing in cases of suspected child pornography : a pilot study / C. Cattaneo, Z. Obertovà, M. Ratnayake, L. Marasciuolo, J. Tutkuviene, P. Poppa, D. Gibelli, P. Gabriel, S. Ritz-Timme. - In: INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF LEGAL MEDICINE. - ISSN 0937-9827. - 126:1(2012 Jan), pp. 139-144.

Can facial proportions taken from images be of use for ageing in cases of suspected child pornography : a pilot study

C. Cattaneo;Z. Obertovà;L. Marasciuolo;P. Poppa;D. Gibelli;
2012-01

Abstract

The age of the victim plays a crucial role for the legal implications concerning pornography. Judges therefore often call on forensic experts to verify the age of individuals depicted on photographs or videos. However, there is no scientifically established protocol available for forensic practice in such cases. The conventional methods such as the evaluation of secondary sexual characteristics provide unsatisfactory results particularly when the legally relevant ages for child pornography (i.e. 14 and 18 years) are concerned. To overcome these limits, a European research group has explored the applicability of facial proportions as an age indicator on images. In this pilot study, standardized facial images of 353 females and 20 males from four age groups (6, 10, 14 and 18 years) were randomly selected for the metric analysis from a large data set including German, Italian and Lithuanian subjects. In this sample, several indices extracted from the frontal and lateral photographs were closely correlated to their respective indices taken from the living individuals. Furthermore, age-related changes were identified for indices taken from the photographs. The discriminant analysis showed that for the pooled sample, 60.3% of the cases were correctly classified into the respective age group. The percentage of correctly classified cases increased in the respective country samples as follows: 69.9% for Germany, 69.4% for Lithuania and 80.5% for Italy. The present study suggests that the metric assessment of the face may be used for age estimation on images. Nonetheless, more work needs to be done in order to verify the reliability of these findings on a large sample.
age estimation ; child pornography ; facial indices ; identification ; photographs
Settore MED/43 - Medicina Legale
INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF LEGAL MEDICINE
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/2434/166732
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