The FBI has arrested a Hoffman Estates man and charged him with filming himself sexually abusing a baby and distributing the film.
Donald R. Peppers, 35, of the 500 block of Mesa Drive, faces federal charges of manufacture of child pornography and two counts of distribution of child pornography, according to an FBI statement. If convicted, he could spent 15 to 30 years in prison.
Peppers appeared Thursday in federal court in Iowa, where he was arrested. Authorities will transport him to Chicago where he’ll make a future court appearance, federal officials in Iowa said.
An undercover FBI agent searching for sexual predators on the Internet encoutnered Peppers on a sexually explicit Web site on May 17, and the agent began chatting with him via instant-messaging, the FBI said.
Using the handle “illinoisdonboy31,” Peppers sent the FBI agent images and videos of young children sexually abused by adults, according to the FBI complaint filed Wednesday.
Peppers also wrote messages detailing his fantasies about abusing a 1-year-old boy who was occasionally left in his care, the FBI said, adding Peppers was frustrated he didn’t enough time alone with the child before the child’s parent returned. Peppers also sent the agent non-pornographic photos of the child, the FBI said.
According to the FBI, Peppers dreamed about raping babies, and wrote he would buy a baby from a drug addict so “we could do whatever we want to him.”
Then on June 1, the FBI said Peppers sent the undercover agent a video file showing him fondling the baby he took care of.
“I send you something you promise never ever share it?” Peppers allegedly wrote in a message typed before the video was sent.
It’s unclear where the abuse was taking place.
The FBI contacted Peppers’ Internet service provider, Comcast, which provided records tracing Peppers’ screen name to his Hoffman Estates’ address, the FBI said. Hoffman Estates police Lt. Rich Russo said Peppers had no previous police record in the village.
A search of Peppers’ Hoffman Estates condo revealed the discovery of an “extensive” collection of DVDs, photographs and video tapes containing child pornography, the FBI added.
Agents arrested him Wednesday afternoon without incident in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, where Peppers had been on business. Authorities said they located him there after contacting the Chicago-area printing company where he works.
Peppers was arrested as part of the FBI’s Innocent Images Task Force, established in 1996 aimed to halt the production, distribution and possession of children pornography. The agency has 43 similar cases being investigated across the country, according to the FBI.