You are here

Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Oregon

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Gresham Man Sentenced to 25 Years in Prison for Producing and Possessing Child Pornography

PORTLAND, Ore. – On Tuesday, December 12, 2017, U.S. District Court Judge Robert E. Jones sentenced Thomas Gene Duncan to 25 years in federal prison followed by a life term of supervised release. Duncan pleaded guilty on August 29, 2017, to one count each of the production and possession of child pornography in federal court. He pleaded guilty to one count each of first-degree rape, second-degree sodomy, and unlawful sexual penetration in state court.  Duncan will be sentenced in state court in early January 2018.

 

“Thomas Duncan is a convicted sex offender who will justly serve the next 25 years in federal prison. Sadly, the potential physical, psychological, and emotional toll on his victim is a predictable consequence of this kind of predatory behavior,” said Billy J. Williams, United States Attorney for the District of Oregon. “It is our hope that this sentence will provide a sense of closure for the victim. The law enforcement community applauds such courage and strength in the face of adversity,” continued U.S. Attorney Williams, “and will continue to pursue similar perpetrators who engage in this reprehensible and destructive conduct.”

 

"Young, vulnerable victims don't just suffer abuse once at the hands of their attacker. They are violated every day - often for years - as strangers living in the dark corners of the Internet trade images and videos," said Renn Cannon, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI in Oregon. "I am proud of the people on the FBI's Child Exploitation Task Force who work day in and day out to bring justice to these children and put their abusers behind bars."

 

According to court documents, Duncan used a dark web bulletin board and website called “Playpen” to search for and obtain child pornography. The server hosting Playpen was seized by the FBI early in 2015. Between October 20, 2014 and March 4, 2015, Duncan logged a total of 72 hours on the site. In a one-week period beginning February 25, 2015, he downloaded 89 files. Duncan admitted to possessing a large collection of pornography on his personal computer, and provided investigators with the password for the device.

 

A forensic review of Duncan’s computer revealed approximately 4,000 images and 120 videos of child pornography. Investigators also discovered sexually explicit images and videos of his fiancée’s then 12-year-old daughter, and troubling though non-pornographic images of her younger sister. Duncan admitted to sexually abusing the 12-year-old on multiple occasions. He was taken into custody following the execution of a search warrant at the residence he shared with his fiancée and her daughters.

 

The case was investigated by the FBI’s Portland Division and prosecuted by Gary Y. Sussman, Assistant United States Attorney for the District of Oregon.

 

The case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Launched in May 2006 by the U.S. Department of Justice and led by United States Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section (CEOS), Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources to better locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who exploit children via the Internet, as well as to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.projectsafechildhood.gov.

 

Child sexual exploitation investigations – many of them undercover – are conducted in FBI field offices by Child Exploitation Task Forces (CTEFs), which combine the resources of the FBI with those of other federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies. Portland FBI’s CETF consists of agents and task force officers from the Beaverton Police Department, Portland Police Bureau, Tigard Police Department, Hillsboro Police Department, and the Clackamas County Sheriff’s Office. The FBI’s CETF is committed to locating and arresting those who prey on children as well as recovering underage victims of sex trafficking and child pornography.

 

Anyone who has information about the physical or online exploitation of children are encouraged to call the FBI at (503) 224-4181 or submit a tip online at www.fbi.gov/tips.

Topic(s): 
Project Safe Childhood
Component(s): 
Updated December 12, 2017