The News Courier in Athens, Alabama

State and Nation

January 23, 2013

Ala. man sentenced in child pornography scheme

— MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — Officials in the U.S. Attorney's Office say a 31-year-old Montgomery man has been sentenced to 35 years in prison on child pornography charges in what authorities are calling an international "online sextortion scheme."

Authorities say Patrick Gunn met girls between the ages of 9 and 16 in chat rooms and on social media sites between 2009 and 2011. Officials say Gunn would either pose as a new kid in town looking for friends, or would convince girls that he was pop star Justin Bieber and asked for explicit photos in exchange for free concert tickets and backstage passes.

After initially complying with his orders, authorities say Gunn would threaten to send explicit photos to the victims' friends and relatives if they did not continue sending him pornographic images of themselves.

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