Earlier today, following a two week trial, a federal jury in Brooklyn, New York, returned a guilty verdict against Bebars Baslan on charges of travel with intent to engage in sexual acts with a child under 12, conspiracy to produce child pornography, attempted production of child pornography, and attempted coercion and enticement of a child to engage in illegal sexual conduct. The charges relate to the defendant’s plot to sexually abuse three children, who were the sons and niece of an individual who became a government informant.
Over the course of the next month, the informant made numerous recordings of the defendant plotting to sexually abuse children. The evidence showed that Baslan wanted to take photographs and video of his girlfriend giving oral sex to a 3-month old in order to use that photograph as blackmail to prevent her from going to the police. The defendant planned to use his girlfriend’s history of working with children to entice parents to allow her to babysit their children, whom the defendant would then drug and sexually abuse.
The evidence showed that the defendant’s plan was halted when the government set up a sting in which its informant offered the defendant the opportunity to sexually abuse his two sons and seven-year-old niece at a Jersey City hotel on March 19, 2013. On that day, the defendant provided the informant with children’s Benadryl and instructed the informant to give his niece an excessive dose in order to “knock her out” so that the defendant could sexually abuse her. Later that night, Baslan and his girlfriend then traveled to the Jersey City hotel armed with an array of camera equipment to photograph the sexual abuse.
As they attempted to enter the room that they believed the informant to be in, agents of the FBI arrested them.
“The protection of children from sexual predators is one of our highest priorities. Let this be a warning to those who would prey on the most vulnerable among us; we will use every means to ensure that those who seek to sexually exploit children are prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law,” stated United States Attorney Lynch. Ms. Lynch expressed her grateful appreciation to the Federal Bureau of Investigation and New York City Police Department who investigated this case.
The conviction was announced by Loretta E. Lynch, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, George Venizelos, Assistant Director-in-Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, New York Field Office, and William J. Bratton, Commissioner, New York City Police Department.
At sentencing, the defendant faces a minimum of 30 years’ imprisonment and maximum of life imprisonment.