Both crimes involve federal charges involving child pornography
US Attorney Trini Ross released to statements today involving the arrest and prosecution of Steuben county residents for the production and possession of child pornogrpahy.
The high profile case among them is the guilty plea by former Dansville teacher, Derek Hagen:
ROCHESTER, N.Y.-U.S. Attorney Trini E. Ross announced today that Derek Hagen, 29, of Batavia, NY, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Elizabeth A. Wolford to production of child pornography and possession of child pornography involving prepubescent minors. The charges carry a mandatory minimum penalty of 15 years in prison, a maximum of 30 years, and a $250,000 fine.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Kyle P. Rossi, who is handling the case, stated that between January 2018, and July 21, 2021, Hagen engaged in a pattern of prohibited sexual conduct with Victim 1, a minor between the ages of 4 and 8, during which Hagen photographed and videoed himself subjecting Victim 1 to sexual contact. Hagen then distributed the images of Victim 1 to other individuals over the internet.
In addition, between May 2018, and July 19, 2018, Hagen was employed as an Assistant Teacher at the Brockport Childhood Development Center in the infant, toddler, and preschool classrooms. During this time, he produced and possessed sexually explicit images of children entrusted to his care. The children ranged in age from six months to five years. Hagen produced these images while changing diapers and assisting children who were learning to use the bathroom. Hagen distributed the images of these children to other individuals over the internet. Hagen also possessed approximately 50,000 images and videos of child pornography that he received from others via the internet.
The plea is the result of an investigation by the New York State Police, under the direction of Major Brian Ratajczak, Homeland Security Investigations, under the direction of Acting Special Agent-in-Charge Matthew Scarpino, and the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.
A Wayland man was recently arrested on similar charges after federal agents were alerted to a cell phone with pornographic images of children:
BUFFALO, N.Y. – U.S. Attorney Trini E. Ross announced today that John Buckley, 59, of Wayland, NY, was arrested and charged by criminal complaint with production and possession of child pornography. The charges carry a maximum penalty of 40 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Laura A. Higgins, who is handling the case, stated that according to the complaint, a Florida woman, through a relative, turned an old smart phone over to the Joliet (Illinois) Police Department after discovering that it contained images of suspected child pornography. The phone previously belonged to Buckley, the woman’s ex-boyfriend. The two had previously lived in Illinois. Joliet Police then sent the phone to the FBI Buffalo Field Office. A search of the phone recovered images that constitute child pornography, including images of a minor victim.
The complaint is the result of an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, under the direction of Special Agent-in-Charge Stephen Belongia. Additional assistance was provided by the FBI Chicago Field Office and the Joliet Police Department.
The fact that a defendant has been charged with a crime is merely an accusation and the defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.