US priest sentenced to 50 years for child porn
Friday Sep 13, 2013
A priest whose case led to a criminal conviction against his bishop will likely spend the rest of his life in a federal prison after being sentenced to 50 years on Thursday for producing or trying to produce child pornography.
The Rev. Shawn Ratigan pleaded guilty in August of last year to five counts one for each of his five young victims. He was charged in May 2011 after police received a flash drive from his computer containing hundreds of images of children, most of them clothed, with the focus on their crotch areas....
A computer technician working on Ratigan's laptop in December 2010 found hundreds of troubling images of young girls and reported it to officials with the Catholic Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph. Instead of turning the photos over to police or reporting suspicions about Ratigan, Bishop Robert Finn sent him away for psychiatric evaluation and later ordered him to stay at a convent where he could say Mass for the sisters and stay away from children.
The photos were given to police in May 2011 after Ratigan violated Finn's orders.
Jackson County prosecutors charged Finn and the diocese in October 2011 with one misdemeanor charge each of failing to report suspected child abuse, because of the five-month delay between when the photos were found on Ratigan's computer and when the diocese reported him to police.
Prosecutor Jean Peters Baker said Finn and the diocese were required under state law to report the discovery to police because the images gave them reason to believe a child had been abused.
Finn was convicted of one count last September and sentenced to two years of supervised probation. The charge against the diocese was dropped....
Complaints against Ratigan, who was ordained in 2004 at the age of 38, began piling up in 2009 as parents became concerned he was spending too much time with children and taking too many photos of the youths while they played and participated in church events.
A May 19, 2010, letter from St. Patrick School Principal Julie Hess mentioned how several people had complained that Ratigan was taking compromising photos of children and allowed them to sit on his lap and reach into his pocket for candy.
Vicar General Robert Murphy, who received the letter, spoke with Ratigan about setting boundaries with children, then gave a summary to the bishop. Finn later acknowledged that Murphy had briefed him on the memo, but he didn't read it until a year later.
Man in kid-cannibalism case to be sentenced
Geoffrey Portway pleaded guilty last May
By Laura Ly CNN Sep 16, 2013
(CNN) —The Boston-area man who planned to kidnap children, rape and eat them is awaiting sentencing Tuesday and is seeking a prison term of 18 years followed by lifetime supervised release, according to court documents.
Geoffrey Portway, 40, who pleaded guilty in May to distribution and possession of child pornography and solicitation to commit a crime of violence, submitted a document through his attorney to Massachusetts District Court on Friday, providing information to be used in imposing a sentence "sufficient but not greater than necessary," the court document says.
The document includes background on the case, cites similar cases, and reasons for why Portway agrees to a term of 18 years, with a maximum of 21 years and 10 months. Such reasons included the contention that he "never engaged in inappropriate sexual conduct with a minor," that Portway will be required to register as a sex offender upon his release, limiting his future employment options, and there was "no evidence that (Portway) ever acted out any of his fantasies."
Portway, a former computer operator, also agreed to pay $10,000 in restitution fees.
Federal authorities are recommending that he go to prison for at least 27 years, according to other court documents filed last week.
"Portway has pled guilty to some of the most vile and heinous crimes known to our society," federal prosecutors wrote in a sentencing recommendation....