James Brigham of Plantation, Florida was arrested Thursday after he was accused of downloading and sharing child pornography online, news sources report. Brigham, 70, was booked into the Broward County Main Jail on 30 counts of child porn possession. He is being held on a $311,000 bond. Reports did not specify a criminal defense lawyer for Brigham.
According to reports, Brigham is retired and resides at a home in Plantation. He was reportedly caught by detectives who were investigating a peer-to-peer file-sharing network. Such networks are routinely used for child pornography and are often monitored by law enforcement. An organization called South Florida Crimes Against Children was apparently involved in the sting. In this instance, detectives reportedly found that Brigham had offered to send child pornographic images and videos over the network between June 14 and August 15, reports say.
Reports suggest that Brigham’s computer was searched and found to contain child pornography. The images reportedly showed children younger than 13 involved in sexual situations with adults and other children. One of the videos reportedly depicted an underage girl performing some kind of sexual activity with a dog, reports say.
During a police interview, Brigham reportedly confessed to downloading the child pornography. However, Brigham said he has never had a desire to molest or have sexual intercourse with children, reports say. Police placed him under arrest and he is awaiting trial.
Many who download and view child pornography believe they are violators of a victimless crime. State law disagrees. According to the government, people who download child pornography are fueling the demand for child pornography in the black market. In addition, the children in the pornography suffer adverse effects, which makes child pornography a victim crime. Detectives even report the explicit images and videos to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children so the children in the content can be identified and rescued.
Cases of child pornography are frequent in South Florida. Earlier this month, a retired chiropractor from Winter Haven, Samuel Oklesh, was arrested after he allegedly downloaded hundreds of images and videos of child pornography, sources report. Oklesh, 67, was taken to the Indian River County Jail on over 50 counts of possession of child pornography. Sources did not say if he qualified for bail or hired legal aid.
On December 21, 2012, detectives obtained a search warrant and seized Oklesh’s personal computer. The officers reportedly uncovered a combination of 500 images and videos, all classified as child pornography, reports say. Some of the alleged content depicted children from infants to 10 years of age engaging in sexual conduct with other children and adults, while other content depicted children exposing their genitals, sources indicate.
Upon discovering the pornography, detectives returned to Oklesh’s home to place him under arrest. They purportedly discovered that he had moved somewhere else in secret. After enlisting the aid of the Indian River Internet Crimes Against Children and searching around, officers located and arrested Oklesh. An update on his case is not currently available.