By George Bao July 19, 2016
LOS ANGELES – An American who admitted molesting four young boys in China and documenting the abuse with hundreds of photographs and videos has been sentenced to 25 years in federal prison in the United States.
Kelly James Morrow, 49, who had been living in China when he was arrested last June and claims a domestic residence in Surprise, Arizona, was sentenced Monday by United States District Judge S. James Otero, the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Los Angeles said Tuesday.
Morrow pleaded guilty in April to two charges – sexual exploitation of children outside the United States and possession of child pornography.
“This defendant is a sexual predator who not only abused young boys – he also documented his physical and mental abuse by taking thousands of pictures of his victims,” said United States Attorney Eileen M. Decker.
“Just as Morrow’s photographs continued to victimize boys that he molested, his massive collection of child pornography victimized every one of the hundreds of child abuse victims depicted in those images.”
Morrow was arrested in June 2015, about a week after arriving at Los Angeles International Airport on a flight from Singapore.
A search of his computer equipment and digital media revealed a collection of more than 60,000 images and videos depicting child pornography.
In addition to the images Morrow produced in China while working on golf course projects, Morrow admitted in a plea agreement filed in court that he took a nude photograph of a young boy in Lincoln, Nebraska in late 2014.
This case was investigated by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations (HSI). The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children provided the initial lead that led to the investigation.
“This case serves as a strong reminder that any abuse of children by American citizens is a crime that will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law,” said Joseph Macias, special agent in charge for HSI Los Angeles.
“As this case shows, HSI is using all of its law enforcement authorities to combat this heinous behavior both here and abroad. We owe it to the children who are the victims in these cases, many of whom will bear the emotional scars of this trauma for the rest of their lives.”
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