MO: St. Louis man fled country, spent nearly a decade in Asia avoiding child porn charges

Source: stltoday.com 2/22/24

ST. LOUIS — When federal prosecutors opened Dominic Pavia’s file last year, they found floppy disks inside.

They were finally revisiting his case after Pavia fled the U.S. and spent nearly a decade in China, Thailand, Cambodia and the Philippines after learning that he was facing indictment for child pornography charges.

He pleaded guilty to possession of child pornography upon his return, and on Wednesday, U.S. District Judge John Ross ruled on the cost of Pavia’s years on the run: seven years in federal prison.

“We’re here in 2024 dealing with something that happened 13 years ago,” Ross said. “Had you faced this back then, the consequences would not really have been what they are now.”
 
St. Louis County police detectives went to Pavia’s home in April 2011 and seized his computers and electronic devices and found multiple child pornography images. He was arrested, but not immediately charged.

Read the full article

 

Subscribe
Notify of

We welcome a lively discussion with all view points - keeping in mind...

 

  1. Your submission will be reviewed by one of our volunteer moderators. Moderating decisions may be subjective.
  2. Please keep the tone of your comment civil and courteous. This is a public forum.
  3. Swear words should be starred out such as f*k and s*t and a**
  4. Please avoid the use of derogatory labels.  Use person-first language.
  5. Please stay on topic - both in terms of the organization in general and this post in particular.
  6. Please refrain from general political statements in (dis)favor of one of the major parties or their representatives.
  7. Please take personal conversations off this forum.
  8. We will not publish any comments advocating for violent or any illegal action.
  9. We cannot connect participants privately - feel free to leave your contact info here. You may want to create a new / free, readily available email address that are not personally identifiable.
  10. Please refrain from copying and pasting repetitive and lengthy amounts of text.
  11. Please do not post in all Caps.
  12. If you wish to link to a serious and relevant media article, legitimate advocacy group or other pertinent web site / document, please provide the full link. No abbreviated / obfuscated links. Posts that include a URL may take considerably longer to be approved.
  13. We suggest to compose lengthy comments in a desktop text editor and copy and paste them into the comment form
  14. We will not publish any posts containing any names not mentioned in the original article.
  15. Please choose a short user name that does not contain links to other web sites or identify real people.  Do not use your real name.
  16. Please do not solicit funds
  17. No discussions about weapons
  18. If you use any abbreviation such as Failure To Register (FTR), Person Forced to Register (PFR) or any others, the first time you use it in a thread, please expand it for new people to better understand.
  19. All commenters are required to provide a real email address where we can contact them.  It will not be displayed on the site.
  20. Please send any input regarding moderation or other website issues via email to moderator [at] all4consolaws [dot] org
  21. We no longer post articles about arrests or accusations, only selected convictions. If your comment contains a link to an arrest or accusation article we will not approve your comment.
  22. If addressing another commenter, please address them by exactly their full display name, do not modify their name. 
ACSOL, including but not limited to its board members and agents, does not provide legal advice on this website.  In addition, ACSOL warns that those who provide comments on this website may or may not be legal professionals on whose advice one can reasonably rely.  
 

10 Comments
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

A couple of things in this story stood out to me. First, is the 78 – 90 month sentence he got for the one count of possession within the range for the crime of conviction in 2011? It stands out to me because the judge flat out told the defendant “Had you faced this back then, the consequences would not really have been what they are now.”

I know Georgia precedent is that the penalty for conviction of a crime must be within whatever the law said at the time of offense, not trial. It follows the same line of thinking that prosecuting under a new law an event that happened prior to the law’s passing is an unconstitutional ex post facto violation – same applies to increased penalties that go into effect afterward (not that it matters in sex crime cases; grrr…). I can’t believe there isn’t a comparable federal precedent, though I’ve never seen or looked for one.

Second, I’m a little disturbed that the prosecutor in this case lamented that she couldn’t prove distribution. What exactly led to the presumption that he was distributing? No matter how big the supposed market is for CSAM (I personally think it’s exaggerated, but whatever), he couldn’t even give it away, let alone sell it, if can’t be easily viewed. By that reasoning, why aren’t they prosecuting every junkie for possession with manufacture and intent to distribute as well? It strikes me as an effort to stack charges to fluff her resume.

And finally, his speech that he acknowledged “re-victimizing” those individuals on his disks every time he viewed them (likely written by his fearless public defender, I’m sure) is just as asinine when the claim is made by prosecutors or supposed victim advocates. For one, any physical or emotional damage done to those depicted was done by whoever made the media. And yet, there is never – NEVER – any effort to find and prosecute them. For another, there is no indication that a single one of those depicted on the defendant’s floppy disks was raising hell and beating down the prosecutor’s doors demanding this guy’s head for viewing them.

And last but not least, if simply viewing said media “re-victimizes” those depicted in CSAM, then the prosecutor and every single LE agent involved in this case is just as guilty as this guy is. String them up too, and give them the same sentences. To say it’s different when someone views it for sexual gratification than when someone views it to investigate is like saying a person driving 90 mph who runs into a person will kill or seriously injure, but a cop who hits a person driving 90 mph answering a 911 call doesn’t leave a scratch.

“Had you faced this back then, the consequences would not really have been what they are now.”

Actually, the consequences would have been the same if not worse. Guy would be most likely already homeless, in poverty or close to death with deteriorating health issues because of the registry. Not to mention a soft target for a vigilante.

What the authorities call “justice” is just milking a skinny cow when it comes to them going after easy possession convictions.

‘Federal prosecutor Dianna Collins said that she had initially planned to present evidence to show that Pavia transmitted the images in order to increase his potential sentence. Instead, she and investigators learned that many of the files from the investigation were on floppy disks and other outdated equipment that was no longer readable’

“I am unable to prove what I would have been able to prove if this was 2011,” she said.

Yet the judge says:

“We’re here in 2024 dealing with something that happened 13 years ago…had you faced this back then, the consequences would not really have been what they are now.”

The prosecutor admits “she had initially planned to present evidence to show that Pavia transmitted the images in order to increase his potential sentence.” So if this man showed up 13 years ago to face the consequences, and this woman had evidence proving this man transmitted 1000s of images & videos, are you telling me judge that the consequences would’ve been better than the 7 year sentence he received? Judge, you’re lying.

I think the most interesting thing about this article is The one thing they don’t mention, and that’s how did the FBI catch this guy? He was bouncing all around Asia for a decade how did they finally snag him?

Last edited 1 month ago by AERO1