August 6, 2012
Roberto Encarnacion Ruiz, 33, of Guaynabo, Puerto Rico, was sentenced to 15 years in prison for creating child pornography. He and four other men were charged with persuading a female minor to perform lewd acts on them and recording the sexual abuse with digital still and video cameras, according to authorities.
Ruiz was a former teacher at the Bayamon Military Academy in Puerto Rico.
Read the full Hispanically Speaking News article here: http://bit.ly/Mg1e5o
Edward Oedewaldt, 49, of Arcadia, Louisiana, was sentenced to 38 years in prison for his role in moderating Dreamboard, a child pornography website, according to U.S. Attorney Stephanie Finley. Oedewaldt encrypted posts by members in an attempt to evade law enforcement.
Dreamboard administrators controlled who could join the website by requiring people to upload child sexual abuse materials depicting children ages 12 and under. Membership levels increased for those who created new images by sexually abusing children. According to Finley, there was one content category called “Super Hardcore” that showed violent rapes and beatings of very young children.
Authorities have been able to identify at least 38 children across the globe were suffering sexual abuse by Dreamboard members.
Read the full San Francisco Gate article here: http://bit.ly/NwMmLp
August 3, 2012
Rev. Shawn Ratigan, 46, pleaded guilty to five counts of child pornography for taking pictures of young girls with their genitals exposed in and around churches. The girls ranged in ages from 2 years old to 9 years old. The images were originally discovered by a computer-repair technician repairing Ratigan’s laptop. Charges are also pending for Bishop Robert Finn for failing to report the child sexual abuse images. Ratigan faces a maximum of 30 years in prison for each charge.
Read the full USA Today article here.
August 2, 2012
The Innocent Justice Foundation would like to share information about two upcoming workshops presented by our friends at TAALK (Talk About Abuse to Liberate Kids).
TAALK’s mission is to reduce children’s vulnerability to child sexual abuse and to support survivors through the healing process. We will accomplish this mission through “Best-in-World” awareness, education, support, and collaborative solutions.
TAALK will be presenting two upcoming workships in the San Diego area:
South Bay Community Services | Wednesday August 8th from 10 am – 12 noon
Dr. Romo and Svava Brooks will share key concepts and practices to help parents prevent and detect child sexual abuse in any setting. This 2 hour interactive presentation is relevant to anyone affiliated with schools or other values driven organizations.
More info: SBCS Flyer
Stewards of Children | Thursday, August 23rd from 9am – noon
Stewards of Children is an evidence-based, revolutionary interactive prevention program developed by Darkness to Light (www.darknesstolight.org), a national child sexual abuse prevention organization. The program educates adults to prevent, recognize,
and react responsibly to child sexual abuse, and to take proactive steps to protect children. Training is approved for CEU‘s for Social Workers and Therapists.
More info: SOC_Flyer_08-23-2012
August 1, 2012
Robert Diduca, 48, of Milford, MA, believed he was sharing a child sexual abuse image of a distraught 18-month old boy clutching a stuffed bunny to fellow child pornographers, when actually he sent the image two Boston Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents. The investigation eventually led to Diduca, a father of three, being sentenced to 18 years in prison. For the two ICE agents, the story doesn’t end there. The investigators identified the stuffed bunny in the image as one unique to the Netherlands. To date the investigation has spread around the globe, thus far amounting to 42 arrests and the discovery of 140 children, as young as 19 DAYS old, who were sexually abused.
Read the full Boston Globe article here: http://articles.boston.com/2012-07-29/business/32903262_1_milford-man-combat-child-photos-and-videos
Finally, today, a major national news outlet covered the topic of child sexual abuse and torture images (what others call child pornography). After seven years of working in this field, and trying to get someone, anyone, at the national level to cover this life-saving topic, finally someone did. For fifteen minutes, as I drove in my car, I heard Robin Young of NPR’s Here and Now and Jenifer McKim of the Boston Globe talk about Jenifer’s article about federal agents pursuing child pornography offenders. Fairly, accurately, but cautiously, Robin and Jenifer broke the silence that many national reporters have maintained for years in their refusal to cover this issue which affects every child, every family, and every community in America.
Thank you, Jenifer, for your very well-written article in the Boston Globe. Thank you, Robin, for taking it national.
Heather Steele, CEO
The Innocent Justice Foundation
July 27, 2012
Largo, Florida puppeteer Ronald Brown, 57, has been arrested by federal agents on charges of conspiring to kidnap a child and possession of child pornography after he was discovered discussing in graphic detail his desires to kidnap children, rape them, murder them and then eat them. Huffington Post details that his website – Puppets Plus – promises “grins and giggles” for kids. Thank you to the federal agents for this particularly disturbing arrest.
July 25, 2012
The Silicon Valley Internet Crimes Against Children Taskforce executed approximately 20 search warrants in “Operation Chickenhawk” – one of the largest child pornorgraphy sweeps ever in Northern California, according to the San Jose police.
Read the full story here: http://mountainview.patch.com/articles/updated-15-arrested-in-child-porn-sting
July 22, 2012
Let us all congratulate the survivors of Jerry Sandusky’s abuse, the law enforcement who investigated the case, and the prosecutors who took Sandusky down. Let us savor the sweet victory of actually taking a predator off the street, and respect the fair treatment of Penn State by the NCAA for allowing the abuse to continue for as long as they did.
But let us also take a moment to think of all the universities, schools, religious and secular organizations, and families where turning away from blatant and horrific abuse is “business as usual.” There are doubtless thousands of American institutions and families who let pedophiles have free reign in the name of “protecting reputations.”
Let us all, no matter what our socio-economic status, geographic location, religious or secular affiliations, or family ties, commit to believing victims, reporting abuse, contacting police, allowing thorough investigations to take place and supporting the prosecution of perpetrators.
We here at Innocent Justice commit to a world where every child has the right to grow up without abuse. Won’t you join us?
June 6, 2012
Erika Susan Perdue, a Dallas socialite married to an attorney, was charged with four counts for collecting and trading child sexual abuse and torture images online. She was sending hundreds images online to undercover agents showing adults sexually abusing children. Perdue confessed to agents that while her husband was at work she had been distributing pornography for the last 11 years. Huff Post