202

Va. man gets 20 years in prison over child porn, ISIS involvement

WASHINGTON — A Sterling, Virginia, man was sentenced to 20 years in prison for receiving child pornography and for destroying evidence in a terrorism investigation, Justice Department officials announced Friday.

Sean Andrew Duncan, 22, pleaded guilty to a federal indictment back in April. In a statement of facts, Duncan admitted to producing child porn as well as to ISIS involvement.

Authorities found thousands of images on Duncan’s phone that included child pornography as well as “videos and images of children and women that Duncan took in a voyeuristic manner,” according to a statement from U.S. attorneys in Virginia’s Eastern District.

“Several of the videos and images are taken in public venues such as stores, metros, parks, and restaurants,” the statement said.

Duncan destroyed a thumb drive when FBI agents arrived at his front door to execute a search warrant on Dec. 29, said prosecutors.

“Moments before the FBI agents entered the residence through the front door, Duncan ran out the back door, barefoot, and with something clenched in his fist,” according to the statement.

“FBI agents guarding the back door yelled at Duncan to stop. Before stopping, Duncan threw a plastic baggie in the air and over the heads of the agents. … The baggie contained a memory chip from a thumb drive that had been snapped into pieces, and placed in a liquid substance that produced frothy white bubbles.”

In June 2017, the FBI learned that Duncan was in contact with a person overseas who had been detained in another country for “actively planning to travel to join ISIS,” officials said. In February 2015, Duncan had told that person he wanted to migrate to Syria and have her join him.

In February 2016, Duncan was denied entry into Turkey and had to return to the U.S.

This unidentified person had also complained to Duncan about “non-Muslim women wearing shorts that exposed their bodies,” according to prosecutors. Duncan replied, prosecutors said, with a message of “try this” and a link to an article from the Al Qaeda-published Inspire magazine called “How to Build a Bomb in the Kitchen of Your Mom.”

That same article was used by the Boston Marathon bombers in 2013.

In October, foreign authorities arrested one of their citizens, an ISIS recruiter, for inciting rebellion. Those authorities found that the recruiter had Duncan’s contact information, Justice officials said. That same month, Allegheny County, Pennsylvania, police provided a copy of Duncan’s phone to the FBI, which had been obtained during an earlier investigation into the death of Duncan’s infant child.

(The cause of death was inconclusive.)

An FBI review of that phone revealed “numerous” internet searches for weapons, body armor and “ISIS-related material.”


Like WTOP on Facebook and follow @WTOP on Twitter to engage in conversation about this article and others.

© 2018 WTOP. All Rights Reserved. This website is not intended for users located within the European Economic Area.



Advertiser Content