A man was sentenced to 40 years in prison on Tuesday after being convicted of running a website that published materials depicting sexual abuse against children.
A federal jury previously convicted 65-year-old Thomas Alan Arthur of Terlingua, Texas, on Jan. 21 on numerous obscenity counts, including three counts of trafficking in obscene visual representations of sexual abuse of a child, five counts of trafficking in obscene text stories, and one count for selling obscene matters involving the sexual abuse of children, according to the Justice Department.
Arthur started the website, called “Mr. Double,” in 1996 and began charging member access fees in 1998, the Justice Department said in a release citing evidence introduced at trial. The site published writings detailing the rape, torture, and murder of infants and toddlers. Some drawings depicted children engaged in sexually explicit conduct.
The FBI executed a search warrant at Arthur’s residence in November 2019. Afterward, the website, which was Arthur’s only source of income for more than 20 years, was taken offline.
Arthur was also accused of sexually assaulting two females who helped authorities during their investigation into him. He drugged one of the women, who had once lived with him in 1992, and recorded himself sexually assaulting her on video, according to court documents.
He also molested a young girl, the daughter of a friend and business associate, when she was 4 or 5 in the early 1980s, the Justice Department said.
“The 40-year sentence imposed by the court reflects the extremely serious nature of the criminal conduct,” U.S. Attorney Ashley Hoff said in a statement.
“This repugnant exploitation of innocent children has no place in society. The FBI will vigorously pursue anyone that profits on the publishing of visual and textual depictions of the sexual abuse and murder of children,” acting FBI Special Agent in Charge Jeffrey Coburn said.
Arthur was sentenced to three years of supervised release and hit with a $50,000 fine in addition to his prison sentence.
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Original Author: Jeremy Beaman
Original Location: Texas man who ran child obscenity website given 40-year prison sentence