Indiana Man Charged With Child Sexual Exploitation
INDIANAPOLIS (AP) - Investigators are trying to identify hundreds of potential victims whose images were found on the computer of an Indiana man charged with coercing two teenage boys into performing online sex acts for him by threatening to post on gay porn sites compromising videos he secretly made of them.
U.S. Attorney Joe Hogsett said during a Monday news conference that the "sextortion" case against Richard Leon Finkbiner could become the largest of its kind in the U.S. to date.
Finkbiner, 39, was arrested Friday at his home in the Clay County community of Brazil and faces two preliminary counts of sexually exploiting a child. He remained in custody Monday and has a detention hearing scheduled for Wednesday. Court records indicated he didn’t have an attorney.
During questioning by FBI agents, Finkbiner estimated that he had coerced at least 100 young people into making explicit videos, according to documents filed in U.S. District Court in Terre Haute. Hogsett said investigators found "thousands" of explicit images on Finkbiner’s hard drive, mostly of teenage boys.
"We are fearful that it could involve hundreds of individuals not just here in Indiana but across the country," Hogsett said.
Authorities released a mug shot of him Monday, hoping that other potential victims will come forward.
"Mr. Finkbiner has focused his attention on what appear to be young men between the ages of 14 to 16," Hogsett said.
The preliminary charges pertain to Finkbiner’s alleged extortion of two 14-year-old boys, one in Maryland and the other in Michigan. Prosecutors say he surreptitiously recorded videos of the boys exposing themselves on webcam chat sites and threatened to post them and the boys’ identities on gay porn sites unless the boys performed sexual acts for him via webcam.
"So u wanna play or b a famous gay porn star?" he allegedly asked the Michigan boy.
The boy told Finkbiner he was underage and pleaded with him to delete the recording, the complaint says. "u know that I under age and that is against the law and u could be arrested for this."