Saturday, April 23, 2011

TSA Screener Arrested

Via, a TSA screener at the Philadelphia International Airport has been charged in distributing child pornography.  This coincides with recent controversy about TSA screening procedures, particularly those involving children.
A passenger screener at Philadelphia International Airport is facing charges that he distributed more than 100 images of child pornography via Facebook, records show.
Federal agents also allege that Transportation Safety Administration Officer Thomas Gordon Jr. of Philadelphia, who routinely searched airline passengers, uploaded explicit pictures of young girls to an Internet site on which he also posted a photograph of himself in his TSA uniform.

We were quite familiar with his Facebook accounts.  He showed up as "Tom Gibbons", "Tom Gibson", and "Mark Rogers."  Below is a a screenshot from the Mark Rogers profile.

His wall was not publicly viewable, but sources said that was even grosser.  We were told that he'd expressed interest in sexually abusing young girls as well as looking at their photos.

The complaint describes some of the images that he uploaded to Photobucket.  One titled "Hehehehehehe.jpg" depicted "a naked prepubescent girl lying on her back with her legs spread apart and her genitalia exposed.  An adult's hand is seen inserting a pink sexual object into the child's genitalia.  The child is holding a pink ball in her mouth that appears to be attached to a strap around the child's face."

According to the indictment, Gordon used at least six different Facebook accounts to post over 100 sexually explicit images of minors.  He also allegedly possessed more than 600 child pornography files, including videos and images.   He was a member of at least one closed group called "PTHC Lovers" on Facebook.  Below is a partial screenshot of the member list.

Since he'd listed Raleigh as his location on his Facebook profiles, we contacted the North Carolina ICAC about him.  Although it turned out that he was actually from Pennsylvania, they were helpful and responsive.  We thank everyone involved in apprehending him.  However, the idea that someone like this was in a position to conduct intensive pat-down searches of children at airports is extremely disturbing.

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