A Briton faces up to 27 years in a US jail for plotting to kidnap, rape, kill and eat a child, authorities say.
Agents found the basement of Geoffrey Portway’s Massachusetts home equipped with a steel cage and a child-sized home-made coffin, in a raid last year.
The 40-year-old had spent months discussing the kidnap and murder online with an American, Michael Arnett.
Portway pleaded guilty to soliciting the kidnap of a child and distribution and possession of child pornography.
His admission on Monday was part of a plea agreement, the US Attorney’s Office said. Under the terms he must serve between 216 and 327 months in jail before he is deported to the UK.
Lisa Biron, a New Hampshire lawyer who worked with an anti-gay Christian-right organization, has been found guilty of child pornography after she videotaped her own daughter having sex with two men on several occasions.
According to Salon, Biron, 43, is facing a minimum sentence of 25 years after she was convicted by a jury on Thursday. It took the jury less than an hour to deliberate.
In November, Biron was arrested by the FBI and accused of eight felony counts after she videotaped a 14-year-old girl having sex with men. Later, the girl was identified as Biron’s daughter.
Biron also videotaped herself having sex with her daughter.
Lane Rees, a 61-year-old GOP committeeman for Walton County, Fla., was arrested Monday night for possession and transmission of child pornography, according to a Northwest Florida Daily News report, since confirmed by other Florida outlets.
Police reportedly searched Rees’ house after conducting a month-long investigation that began when authorities received a tip from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children in February about child pornography being traded by an online profile at his address.
Walton County Sheriff Mike Adkinson told the Daily News on Monday that police had found “pretty significant images” matching the tip they’d received.
Rees has served as a GOP committeeman since 2008, but has held more powerful positions in local Republican politics in the past. His wife, Brenda, currently serves as Walton County’s elected state committeewoman.
According to his website, Rees was named Walton’s “Man of the Year” in 2011 and has been active in the Evangelical community.
Internet pariah Hunter Moore (pictured) has been ordered by a Nevada judge to pay anti-bullying activist James McGibney $250,000 in damages for defamation, according to BetaBeat.
In 2012, Moore falsely accused McGibney, owner of the anti-bullying website Bullyville, of “serious crimes that are defamatory per se, including pedophilia and possession of child pornography,” according to a judgment handed down last week. In addition to the $250,000 in damages, Moore was ordered to pay an additional $11,581 in attorneys’ fees and $1,588.50 in costs associated with the case.
Though Moore acknowledged the suit on Twitter, he declined to defend himself, resulting in a default bench judgment from the Nevada district court in Las Vegas.
Moore sold his “revenge porn” website Is Anyone Up to McGibney in 2012. At the time he claimed to have had a change of heart about his rise to fame as the operator of a site dedicated to publishing hurtful, usually sexual photos of unsuspecting people, which were sent in by their “exes” and accompanied by snarky comments from Moore.
But Moore was apparently pulling a prank of some sort, according to BetaBeat’s Jessica Roy. The move was, in fact, “a massive troll, fueled by copious amounts of cocaine.”
The ruling still allows the search of the defendant’s gear because in the court’s review they determined that reasonable suspicion of sex tourism did exist.
“A person’s digital life ought not be hijacked simply by crossing a border,” she added. “When packing traditional luggage, one is accustomed to deciding what papers to take and what to leave behind. When carrying a laptop, tablet or other device, however, removing files unnecessary to an impending trip is an impractical solution given the volume and often intermingled nature of the files. It is also a time-consuming task that may not even effectively erase the files.”
At the same time, a forensic search of a device can reveal each and every file, even deleted ones.
“Such a thorough and detailed search of the most intimate details of one’s life is a substantial intrusion upon personal privacy and dignity,” McKeown wrote. “We therefore hold that the forensic examination of Cotterman’s computer required a showing of reasonable suspicion, a modest requirement in light of the Fourth Amendment.”
That element of the ruling elicited vehement dissent from three judges.
“Whether it is drugs, bombs, or child pornography, we charge our government with finding and excluding any and all illegal and unwanted articles and people before they cross our international borders,” Judge Consuelo Callahan wrote, joined in full by Judge Richard Clifton and partially by Judge Milan Smith.
“Accomplishing that Herculean task requires that the government be mostly free from the Fourth Amendment’s usual restraints on searches of people and their property,” Callahan added. “Today the majority ignores that reality by erecting a new rule requiring reasonable suspicion for any thorough search of electronic devices entering the United States. This rule flouts more than a century of Supreme Court precedent, is unworkable and unnecessary, and will severely hamstring the government’s ability to protect our borders.”
More: Courthouse News Service
A Roman Catholic priest in Sorel-Tracy who was reportedly active for many years in a splinter arm of the scouting movement will remain behind bars until his next court appearance on Monday.
Father Daniel Moreau was charged Thursday with possession and distribution of child pornography.
Believed to be in his mid-50s, the priest was arrested at the Saint-Gabriel-Lalemant church on de Roi St., near Lalement St. in Sorel-Tracy, about 100 kilometres northeast of Montreal. The TVA network said neighbours looked on in stupefaction as the parish priest was taken away in handcuffs and placed in a patrol car — then driven away by police.
The Sûreté du Québec was acting on a request from a police force outside the province, Sgt. Daniel Thibaudeau of the SQ said.
A New Hampshire lawyer who works with a virulently anti-gay Christian right organization has been found guilty of child pornography charges after videotaping a 14-year-old girl having sex with two men on multiple occasions.
Lisa Biron, 43, of Manchester faces a minimum sentence of 25 years in prison after a jury convicted her yesterday after deliberating for less than an hour.
Biron, arrested by the FBI last November, was accused of eight felony counts involving the videotaping of men having sex with the girl. She also allegedly made a cellphone video of herself having sex with the girl.
Biron, who claimed on her Facebook page (which was taken down, according to the Concord Monitor) that the Bible was her favorite book, had worked with Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF), formerly the Alliance Defense Fund, in defending a Pentecostal church in Concord in a tax fight against the city.
The Arizona-based ADF calls itself a “servant ministry” that seeks to transform the legal system and advocate “for religious liberty, the sanctity of life, and marriage and family.” The group issues dire warnings about “the homosexual agenda” and offers a book (available for a donation of $35) by its president, Alan Sears, and senior director Craig Osten, with that title. In the book, the authors claim that “the homosexual agenda” will destroy religious liberty and free speech. In one chapter, they claim that homosexuality on college campuses leads to pedophilia, and that homosexuality and pedophilia “are intrinsically linked,” a falsehood long perpetuated by the anti-gay right to demonize LGBT people.
In the wake of Biron’s arrest, the ADF removed all mentions of her from its website and Facebook page, and in a November CBS News report said that Biron was never an employee. The group has released no further statements on Biron. According to the LGBT blog Joe.My.God., the group continued to remove mentions of her from its Facebook page yesterday and banned anyone who posted anything about her.
More than 200 adults have been arrested in an international investigation of child pornography, Immigration and Customs Enforcement said Thursday.
The agency’s director, John Morton, said 123 child victims were identified during the five-week investigation, which ended in early December. ICE and local authorities found 110 victims in 19 U.S. states, while the others were living in six countries elsewhere.
Morton declined to provide specific details about which foreign countries were involved, saying only that there were some cases in Mexico.
The investigation, dubbed “Operation Sunflower,” was part of ICE’s effort to find and rescue victims, and arrest abusers and people who make or transmit child pornography.
“We have to attack child exploitation relentlessly and together. There is no other way, there is no other answer,” Morton said. “It is a wrong among wrongs. We are literally defending the defenseless.”
Morton also announced arrest warrants for two unidentified adults charged in Los Angeles with molesting a girl who appeared in online photos to be about 13 when she was abused. The man and woman were identified only as “John Doe” and “Jane Doe” and authorities believe they may have been in the San Fernando Valley area north of Los Angeles when they abused the girl. Photos of the abuse investigators found online are believed to be about 11 years old, Morton said.
The day after CT’s article was published online, the Post published a long piece titled, “Sources in ‘Second Coming Christ Controversy’ Face Scrutiny,” followed days later by another with the less subtle headline, “Christianity Today Writer Ken Smith Is Founder of a Company Fined for Deceptive Business Practices; With Child Porn Ties.”
The main thrust of the first of the two Post pieces was to disprove the allegations that Jang’s followers considered him a new messiah by calling into question the legitimacy of the CT sources who made these claims.
But the attacks in this first response seem mild compared to the piece that followed alleging that Olsen’s co-writer Ken Smith was somehow connected to child pornography. Penned by the Post’s Katherine T. Phan, it highlights Smith’s work as the founder of the now defunct software company, Zango (which web-savvy readers may remember for their intrusive advertising in web browsers).
Smith acknowledged that Zango “partnered with some people that we should never have partnered with” in a 2009 post on his blog—which the CP article cites—titled “What Zango Got Wrong.”
When I asked if he was aware of Smith’s history with Zango, Olsen told me that “The child porn thing really came out of the blue. It wasn’t an issue that was on my radar until CP ran the article.” He continued, “That headline was really shocking. Did he distribute child porn? was the question in the headline. If you read the article the answer is no. Zango is not a child porn company and never was.”
What the article did indicate to Olsen was that, “there are different standards of journalism at work. Their article struck me more as an effort to smear and discredit the writer than to actually address what was in the article.”
Tim Dalrymple, who’s been watching and writing about the controversy, observed that “the response from the Christian Post was so over-the-top defensive of David Jang, and so massively pejorative toward anyone who questioned him, that the Christian Post (at least in that instance) essentially abandoned the pretense of journalism and became Jang’s defense attorney.”
Ted Olsen told me, “I was aware of almost everything in the [Post] article…There wasn’t anything that, even if it was true—which I have questions about—would have negated anything in our [CT] article.”
This shouldn’t come as a surprise since a meeting was held between the two prior to CT’s publication of the original article in which the Post attempted to present evidence that contradicts CT’s findings. According to Olsen, who noted that his understanding was that the meeting was off the record until the Post made it public, representatives of the Post and Olivet University wanted “to try to get CT to postpone publication.”
“The reasons for that were multi-fold,” he says, “but they were not compelling… not reasons that would have led us to postpone or kill the story.”
Repeated requests for comment from the Christian Post went unanswered, though I was eventually informed that the Post’s editor, Michelle Vu, who authored the August 17 response, had “politely decline[d]” my request.
Instead, I was provided with a brief statement: “Christianity Today wrote an article that implicated the Christian Post. CP responded with our own fact-finding article about the sources used. CP had already told CT and sent documents to the publication regarding the questionable integrity of its sources. Nothing should come as a surprise to CT.”
The IC3 has been made aware of a new Citadel malware platform used to deliver ransomware named Reveton. The ransomware lures the victim to a drive-by download website, at which time the ransomware is installed on the user’s computer. Once installed, the computer freezes and a screen is displayed warning the user they have violated United States federal law. The message further declares the user’s IP address has been identified by the Federal Bureau of Investigation as visiting websites that feature child pornography and other illegal content.
To unlock the computer, the user is instructed to pay a fine to the U.S. Department of Justice using a prepaid money card service. The geographic location of the user’s IP address determines what payment services are offered. In addition to the ransomware, the Citadel malware continues to operate on the compromised computer and can be used to commit online banking and credit card fraud.
This is an attempt to extort money with the additional possibility of the victim’s computer being used to participate in online bank fraud. If you have received this or something similar, do not follow payment instructions. Infected computers may not operate normally. If your computer is infected, you may need to contact a local computer expert for assistance to remove the malware.
It is suggested that you:
File a complaint at IC3.gov. Look for updates about the Reveton virus on the IC3 website.
Seek out a local computer expert to assist with removing the malware.
Do not pay any money or provide personal information.
Be aware that even if you are able to unfreeze your computer on your own, the malware may still operate in the background. Certain types of malware have been known to capture personal information such as user names, passwords, and credit card numbers through embedded keystroke logging programs.