Thursday, October 22, 2015

Recidivist Child Sex Offender Convicted of Child Pornography Charges

A Minnesota man with two prior convictions for sexually abusing children was convicted today of child pornography charges.  Assistant Attorney General Leslie R. Caldwell of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division and U.S. Attorney Andrew M. Luger of the District of Minnesota made the announcement.

Rex Lee Furman, 52, of Federal Dam, Minnesota, was found guilty following a three-day trial of producing, receiving, distributing and possessing child pornography, and committing a felony offense while being required to register as a sex offender.  Senior U.S. District Judge David S. Doty of the District of Minnesota presided over the trial.  Sentencing will be set at a later date.  Due to his prior convictions, Furman is subject to a mandatory life sentence plus 10 years in prison.

According to the evidence presented at trial, in the fall and winter of 2013, during separate investigations by the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BCA) and the Minneapolis Police Department, law enforcement officers obtained child pornography videos from an Internet protocol (IP) address linked to Furman’s home.  The evidence showed that, thereafter, on Feb.13, 2014, during a search of his residence, which was executed with the assistance of the Cass County Sheriff’s Office, Furman acknowledged that he had downloaded child pornography.  According to the trial evidence, he also informed a special agent that he had produced images depicting the genitalia of two girls who had been in his care, one who turned four years old and one who was five years old at the time.  The trial evidence showed that subsequent forensic analysis of Furman’s computers and digital media revealed child pornography that he produced in August and September of 2012 that included sexually explicit photos and a video.  According to the trial evidence, investigators also found hundreds of images and videos depicting children engaged in sex acts with adults.

Furman has two prior Minnesota state court convictions for engaging in sex acts with minors.  In December 1981, Furman pleaded guilty to sexually abusing a five-year-old girl who was in his care.  In January 1999, Furman was convicted after a bench trial of sexually abusing a 10-year-old girl in his care.  As a result, he was required to register as a sex offender until 2021.

This case was investigated by the Minnesota BCA, which leads the Minnesota Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Task Force, and the Minneapolis Police Department, which is a member of the FBI Child Exploitation Task Force.  The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Melinda A. Williams of the District of Minnesota and Assistant Deputy Chief Alexandra R. Gelber of the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section (CEOS).

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