A Filipino wanted in the US for child pornography was captured by the FBI and the PN in the DR, where he had been hiding for more than ten years.


By Miguel Cruz Tejada

NEW YORK._ Datu, a Lynn (Massachusetts) resident, fled to the Dominican Republic after being indicted on the charges in 2008 when a computer with two external hard drives was found where he stored thousands of images of children and girls.
In the footage, the minors are seen engaging in sexually explicit conduct, according to the statement.
A grand jury indicted the Filipino in December 2012 for escaping from Massachusetts to Santo Domingo, where he evaded US justice for ten years.
Investigators did not clarify how they found Datu’s whereabouts in the Dominican Republic or specify where he was captured.
It was also not said what the defendant did in Santo Domingo and if he was using a false name.
After the arrest, the Filipino was brought to the Federal Court of the Southern District in Florida, where the charges were read.
He will be extradited to Massachusetts to face charges.
In a statement from the Massachusetts federal prosecutor’s office, federal Rachael S. Rollins explains that the FBI offered a $10,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the defendant.
The prosecutor praised the joint effort between special agents and the FBI’s Child Exploitation and Human Trafficking Task Force in Boston to capture the Filipino.
He was arrested a year after the FBI offered the reward through an international publicity campaign.
The investigations in the Dominican Republic included the participation of the FBI Legal Attaché in Santo Domingo, the National Police, the Special Division for the Investigation of International Organized Crime, migration agents, the Special Prosecutor’s Office against Crime and High Technology Crimes, and the office directed by prosecutor Iván Vladimir Feliz Vargas.
“It doesn’t matter where you go. It doesn’t matter where you hide. If you’re a fugitive from justice, we won’t stop until we find you. This arrest proves that fact,” District Attorney Rollins said in the statement. “Keeping our children safe from predators it is one of the top priorities of my administration. My office remains vigilant in our pursuit of justice for the most vulnerable members of our communities,” he warned.
If found guilty, the Filipino would be sentenced to up to five years in jail, another five years on supervised release, and a maximum fine of $250,000.
Joseph R. Bonvalonta, special agent in charge of the FBI’s Boston Division, said Datu’s arrest should warn other fugitives.
“Our commitment to justice has no time limit and knows no borders. The arrest of Melchor Datu should send a clear message to fugitives: no matter where in the world they try to hide, we will find them and bring them back to justice,” Bonvalonta said.
“We would like to thank the concerned citizen who alerted us to the whereabouts of Mr. Datu and our law enforcement partners in the Dominican Republic for their outstanding cooperation,” the special agent added.
He noted that the crime for which Melchor Datu is accused is worrying, and the FBI hopes this news brings comfort to all those affected.



NEW YORK._ The Filipino Melchor Datu, 51 years old and wanted in the United States for child pornography, was captured in the Dominican Republic by agents of the FBI and the PN. (FBI photos)


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here