Jailed Queensland pedophile Peter Truong says he wants to be a good father to his young son despite offering the boy to other child molesters.
An Australian pedophile sentenced to 30 years’ jail in the US for sharing the adopted son he bought for $US8000 with a global network of child molesters says he is not a “monster”.
Peter Truong, 36, from Cairns, says he still loves his eight-year-old son, who was rescued by authorities in Los Angeles in 2011.
“I really do,” Truong said as he faced District Court judge Sarah Evans Baker at his sentencing in Indianapolis on Monday.
“I love him with all of my heart and every part of my body.”
Truong and his longtime partner, Mark Newton, 42, also from Queensland, had tried to have a child via in-vitro fertilisation with surrogates.
They located a pregnant woman in Russia who did not want the child because the father had left her.
They purchased the boy from the mother for $US8000 and when he was born in July 2005, they managed to dupe government officials and adopt the child.
“Newton and Truong were heavily involved in child pornography before (the boy) was born,” US prosecutor Steven DeBrota told the court.
The court heard how Truong and Newton recorded the assaults on the child on high-definition video cameras, meticulously kept record of each assault, and shared the abuse with a pedophile ring scattered across the world.
On a trip to Germany, the boy had sex with a five-year-old local boy.
Newton was sentenced to 40 years’ jail by Judge Barker in June, the maximum sentence available to her.
Newton is being housed in a federal prison in Tucson, Arizona, while Truong has requested to serve his sentence in federal prison hospitals in Rochester, New York, or Butner, North Carolina, so he can continue with his therapy and treatment.
Truong’s lawyer, Angelyn Gates, said her client would also like to serve his sentence in Australia, where he will face charges on his return.
A nervous Truong, dressed in a black-and-white striped jumpsuit and with his wrists and ankles shackled, told the judge how he had been a victim of sexual abuse as a child in Australia and that it continued into his teenage years.
He said he has undergone intensive therapy in prison and now realised what he had done was wrong.
“I have a great deal of regret for what I have done and I also want to give my son the very best of everything,” Truong told the judge.
“I want to be a good parent to my son.”
Judge Barker cut 10 years from Truong’s sentence because he had helped authorities by supplying passwords to encrypted content, leading to the arrest of other international pedophiles.
The judge also took into account that Truong was abused as a child.
“I want to thank you for treating me as a human being and seeing me for who I really am, and not a monster,” Truong told the judge.
Mr DeBrota told AAP when the boy was first rescued, medical staff who examined him said the then six-year-old was suffering a trauma level of “10 out of 10”, but today he is “doing well”.
He is living with family in the US.
The judge was full of praise for the work of authorities in the US, Australia, New Zealand, Germany and other nations that led to the arrests, but the shocking nature of the case rocked veteran investigators.
Mr DeBrota said his team had to watch 80 videos, some an hour long.
“It wasn’t an easy thing to do,” he said.