On Friday, March 9, 2012 U.S. Attorney André Birotte Jr. of the Central District of California, Assistant Director in Charge Steve Martinez of the FBI’s Los Angeles Field Office and Assistant Attorney General Lanny A. Breuer of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division announced that three men were sentenced to prison in Los Angeles for their participation in an international child pornography ring.
Thirty one year old Andrew Neil Scottof of Flint, Mich., was sentenced to 30 years in prison followed by lifetime supervised release. On Dec. 2, 2010 Scott pleaded guilty to two counts of production of child pornography and participating in a child exploitation enterprise.
Sixty-eight-year old Woodrow Tracy of Sun Valley, Calif., was sentenced to 96 months in prison followed by lifetime supervised release. On Sept. 21, 2010, Tracy pleaded guilty for conspiracy to transport child pornography.
Resident of League City, Texas, 34 year old Justin Lee was sentenced to 66 months in prison followed by lifetime supervised release. On Sept. 7, 2010 Lee pleaded guilty for conspiracy to transport child pornography.
U.S. District Judge Virginia A. Phillips sentenced Scott, Lee and Tracy.
International investigation into the “Lost Boy” online bulletin board resulted in these sentences.According to court documents and proceedings, the Lost Boy bulletin board was established to provide a forum to trade child pornography and was dedicated to men who have a sexual interest in young boys.
Approximately three years ago, Lost Boy bulletin was shut down by Federal authorities, working in conjunction with a coalition of international law enforcement agencies. As a result of the investigation, 16 named defendants were arrested for their roles in the bulletin board and were charged in the United States.
15 defendants have been convicted at trial or have pleaded guilty while one defendant has passed away. As a result of the investigation six additional men have been charged with child molestation. Investigation also led to the identification of 27 domestic victims of child abuse, some of whom were portrayed in images posted to the Lost Boy bulletin board.
Law enforcement authorities discovered the Lost Boy bulletin board after receiving information from Eurojust, the judicial cooperation arm of the European Union, according to court documents and proceedings. U.S. law enforcement was provided with leads obtained from Norwegian and Italian authorities indicating that a North Hollywood, Calif., man was communicating with an Italian national about child pornography and how to engage in child sex tourism in Romania. The FBI executed search warrants that led to the discovery of the Lost Boy network on the information from Europe. Lost Boy had 35 members, 16 of whom were U.S. nationals. Other members of the network were located in countries around the world including United Kingdom, Germany, New Zealand, Canada, France, Belgium and Brazil which was revealed on further investigation.
Lost Boy had a thorough vetting process for new members, who were required to post child pornography to join the organization as per the court documents. To avoid removal from the board, the members were required to continue posting child pornography to remain in good standing. To evade detection by law enforcement, Lost Boy members advised each other different techniques according to the court documents. Using screen names to mask identities and encrypting computer data were included in the advice.
The Brazilian Federal Police, International law enforcement efforts involving European law enforcement and other agencies have identified child molestation suspects in New Zealand, Europe and South America. One in France, three suspects in Romania and another in Brazil have been charged, and offenders have been convicted in United Kingdom and Norway. Dozens of child victims were located in Romania, Brazil, Norway and other countries. In conjunction with the Los Angeles-based Sexual Assault Felony Enforcement (SAFE) Team, U.S. Postal Inspection Service and the FBI, led an investigation into the Lost Boy bulletin board. Invaluable assistance during the investigation was provided by Eurojust along with the High Technology Investigative Unit of the Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section (CEOS) in the Justice Department’s Criminal Division.
The case is being prosecuted by CEOS Trial Attorney Andrew McCormack and Assistant U.S. Attorneys Joey L. Blanch and Yvonne Garcia of the Central District of California.
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