American sentenced to life imprisonment for child porn, trafficking

Published by rudy Date posted on May 28, 2020

by Kristine Joy Patag (Philstar.com), 28 May 2020

MANILA, Philippines — A Pampanga court sentenced an American child sex offender to life imprisonment over human trafficking charges.

Angeles City Pampanga Regional Trial Court Branch 58 Judge Irineo Pangilinan Jr. found David Timothy Deakin guilty of large-scale human trafficking. He was ordered to pay a fine of P2 million. He must also pay each victim P500,000 for moral damages and P100,000 for exemplary damages.

A copy of the ruling has yet to be made public as of this story’s posting, but the Department of Justice has confirmed the conviction.

In 2017, agents of the National Bureau of Investigation arrested Deakin in Mabalacat, Pampanga, in a operation reported by the Associated Press as “one of the largest seizures of potentially illicit digital content in the country.”

During the operation, authorities also rescued two girls who were believed to have been exploited to sell videos, images and livestreams. Found in Deakin’s possession were hard drives containing child sexual exploitation materials, sex toys and drug-use paraphernalia.

“A referral from the US Federal Bureau of Investigation revealed that Deakin was sexually abusing Filipino children, recording the abuse and selling it to foreign customers online,” the International Justice Mission said in a statement.

IJM supported the rescue operation of Deakin’s victims and collaborated with the prosecution in the case. The group’s social workers also took care of eight of the offenders’ victims.

NBI Anti-Human Trafficking Division chief Janet Francisco was quoted in a statement from the IJM as saying: “Let this sentence be a message to [Online Sexual Exploitation of Children] criminals: This is a war you can’t win.”

Kathleen Piccio-Labay, lead lawyer of IJM-Manila Field Office, meanwhile hailed the conviction of Deakin, rendered electronically by the court amid this pandemic, as inspiring.

“This proves that international cooperation is truly indispensable in fighting a hidden crime that transcends national borders,” she added.

Philippines is top source of online child sex abuse

IJM’s seven-year study, released last week, found that the Philippines has become the world’s largest known source of online child sexual exploitation, with endemic poverty helping drive a surge in abuse.

The combination of English fluency and high internet connectivity in the former US colony helped make the country a “global hotspot” for child pornography, the report said.

The proportion of Philippine internet addresses used to host child pornography had tripled in the three years to 2017, said the study, which based its findings on data collected by law enforcement data.

The United Nations Children’s Fund said in February that the Philippines is one of the top global sources of child sex abuse materials, with 600,000 “sexualized” photos of Filipino children bartered and traded in 2018 alone.

DOJ’s Office of Cybercrime, citing data by private nonprofit National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, said 279,166 incidents of OSEC were reported from March 1 to May 24 in 2020.

This posts a 264.6% rise from cases logged during the same period last year, where 76,551 reports were recorded. — with reports from Agence France Presse

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