Tuesday, August 28, 2012
Can anyone tell me what I can expect when I travel to the Philippines for the first time in September? I am an oriented RSO and have to register 2 years yet. From what I know if you stay under 21 days you will not need a visa, just on arrival. My lawyer is also an immigration lawyer and told me my name is not on an interpool database. I was worried when they scan my passport what happens? I've only heard of a few sex offenders that were refused entry to Philippines, but they were frequent vistors. I am assuming there had to be a red flag on them ahead of time. From what I read about a dozen RSO's have got their passports in 2008-2010 and went to the Philippines and one even went to Japan. Any advise, I know on my return trip I will go through an intense interview process.
CO - Former Boulder County deputy (Rick Jon Ferguson) guilty of Internet sexual exploitation of a child
|Rick Jon Ferguson|
By Pierrette J. Shields
BOULDER -- A former Boulder County deputy pleaded guilty to felony Internet sexual exploitation of a child Tuesday morning, sparing himself a scheduled December trial on multiple felonies.
Under the deal with prosecutors, Rick Jon Ferguson will be sentenced to probation on the exploitation count and will only risk prison time if he later violates the terms of that probation or if a judge decides that prison is appropriate for a felony obscenity count, according to the deal. Ferguson is scheduled to return to Boulder District Court on Oct. 30 for sentencing.
He pleaded guilty to felony sexual exploitation of a child, felony obscenity, and official misconduct, a petty offense. Seven other counts were dismissed.
Ferguson was accused of using his Boulder County Sheriff's Office-issued computer to carry on sexually explicit online chats with girls as young as 11.
According to the sheriff's office, county IT employees noticed unusual activity on the laptop in Ferguson's patrol car and uncovered the sexually explicit conversations. Further investigation revealed that the conversations were with people on the Internet who claimed to be young girls, according to reports. District attorney investigators and sheriff's investigators secured a search warrant for Ferguson's Lafayette home and seized his personal computers, which were also searched.
Ferguson initially entered pleas of not guilty to the charges and was scheduled for a trial to begin on Dec. 10. The plea spares him the trial and any lengthy prison time that could have come with multiple felony convictions.
By Louise Hall
A former police officer who has admitted doctoring photos of teenage girls he met through a church youth group and posted them on a pornographic website says he likes to think of himself as an "artist".
Wayne Paul Mason, 42, is charged with more than 50 child sex and pornography charges after one of his alleged victims found on a website explicit photos of herself and other girls taken by him nearly a decade earlier.
Mr Mason, who was an officer with the NSW Police between 1997 and 2003, has pleaded not guilty.
The prosecution claims Mr Mason had sexual relationships with at least two 14- and 15-year-old girls he met through his role as a youth group leader and karate teacher at a Baptist Church in Sydney's south-west.
In a 2010 police interview played to a NSW District Court jury today, Mr Mason said he only flirted and engaged in "romantic talk" with one of the girls until she reached the age of consent.
He said a sexual relationship began when she was 16 but even then the couple faced a "stigma" because he was in his 30s.
"It's suffice to say love doesn't conquer all," he said.
The Crown prosecutor, Sarah Huggett, said the woman, now in her mid 20s, entered her name into a search engine and discovered pornographic photos allegedly taken by Mr Mason when she was 15. She also found similar pictures of other young girls she recognised from the church group.
In the police interview, Mr Mason admitted taking the photos of the woman during their four-year relationship.
"Of course; she was my girlfriend," he said. "I like to call myself a bit of an artist."
But he claimed he had doctored some of the other photos found on the website. He said he placed pictures of the girls' faces on the bodies of "random" women in sexually explicit poses.
Asked if he was sexually gratified by the images, he said: "No, it was more the ability to make people think it was real. I enjoy that they think it's real. Maybe it's an artist thing."
The charges date back to 1996 when Mr Mason allegedly kissed the 14- and 15-year-old younger sister of a woman he was dating.
Mr Mason allegedly preyed on the teenagers, showering them with attention, gifts and love letters before they agreed to various sex acts with him, including being photographed in sexual poses.
However, because the girls were under 16 at the time they could not give consent, Ms Huggett said.
Often, Mason was in a position of authority as their youth group leader or karate teacher, which aggravated the offences, she said.
The trial continues.
By Jonathan Stempel
(Reuters) - A federal appeals court said Indiana's sex and violent offender registry unconstitutionally violated the due process rights of thousands of registrants because it did not give them a chance to fix mistakes.
The 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Chicago rejected arguments by the Indiana Department of Correction that it was not directly responsible for errors in the registry, which contains about 24,000 names, and that registrants had other procedures to challenge mistakes.
Concluding that erroneous labeling as a "sexually violent predator" implicated a liberty interest protected by the Due Process Clause, the 7th Circuit noted that Indiana had recently begun letting current prisoners challenge pending registry listings, but gave other registrants no such opportunity.
"The policy provides no process whatsoever to an entire class of registrants -- those who are not incarcerated," and is therefore "constitutionally insufficient," Circuit Judge Diane Wood wrote for a unanimous three-judge panel.
Tuesday's decision reversed a December 2011 ruling by U.S. District Judge Tanya Walton Pratt in Indianapolis. The 7th Circuit sent the case back to that court, and encouraged the parties to agree on procedures to fix registry errors.
The office of Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller, which represented the Department of Correction, is reviewing the decision, spokesman Bryan Corbin said.
State legislators this month began hearings on possible changes to the registry, after the Indiana Supreme Court had in 2009 found some restrictions unconstitutional, he added.