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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Western District of Missouri

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, April 16, 2015

Former Inmate Sentenced to 42 Years for Distributing Child Porn from Prison

Project Safe Childhood

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Tammy Dickinson, United States Attorney for the Western District of Missouri, announced that a former California prison inmate, incarcerated for state sex offenses, was sentenced in federal court today for using a smuggled cell phone to distribute child pornography over the Internet.

 

Eric Lee Bederson, 37, formerly an inmate at the California Medical Facility in Vacaville, Calif., was sentenced by U.S. Chief District Judge Greg Kays to 42 years in federal prison without parole.

 

On Aug. 12, 2014, Bederson pleaded guilty to two counts of distributing child pornography. At the time he committed these offenses, Bederson was serving a 16-year state sentence in California for a charge involving the aggravated sexual abuse, sexual abuse, and abusive sexual conduct of a minor. Bederson, then a 21-year-old day care center teacher, had been arrested following an investigation into suspicions that he was molesting multiple children and possessed child pornography. According to court documents, Bederson molested at least 20 children. A civil lawsuit resulted in a judgment of more than $10 million in damages.

 

Bederson used smuggled cell phones to distribute numerous images and videos of child pornography while he was incarcerated. As his release date approached, Bederson began communicating with other traders of child pornography via e-mail. He amassed upwards of 40 gigabytes of images and videos in his multiple e-mail accounts, which he used to actively trade, receive, and distribute to others – including an undercover federal agent based in Kansas City, Mo. According to court documents, these images and videos constitute violent and disturbing child pornography, including minors as young as five years old.

 

Between Sept. 29 and Oct. 8, 2011, he sent six e-mails to an undercover agent with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), which included a total of 164 images and 10 videos of child pornography. Bederson sent this child pornography with the hope and expectation that the undercover HSI agent (and others) would reciprocate in sending child pornography back to him in return. Bederson also admitted that his e-mail accounts contained multiple gigabytes of e-mails and attachments of child pornography.

 

For example, on Sept. 29, 2011, Bederson sent an e-mail with 24 attached images of child pornography to the undercover federal agent. On Oct. 1, 2011, Bederson sent another e-mail to the undercover federal agent, which contained a video of child pornography.

 

This case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Patrick D. Daly. It was investigated by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and the California State Prison security office.

Topic(s): 
Project Safe Childhood
Updated April 16, 2015