Saturday, January 10, 2009

AK - Winner of lottery comes forward, is a 3-time sex offender

View the article here

Now watch, this will be all over the news. Just goes to show you, anybody can win the lottery. Video is available at the site.


By Yvonne LaVoie

ANCHORAGE -- The winner of the $500,000 lottery drawing came forward Saturday to collect his prize, and the man who will pocket a half-million dollars from a raffle designed to benefit a sex abuse victims charity is a three-time sex offender.

Alec Ahsoak of Anchorage was convicted of sexual abuse of a minor twice in 1993 and once in 2000, according to the Alaska Department of Public Safety Sex Offender/Child Kidnapper Central Registry.

The lottery, which had its drawing Friday night, was conducted by Lucky Times Pull Tabs. State law says all games of chance must benefit charity, and the organization Standing Together Against Rape, or STAR, was the designated beneficiary.

Ahsoak, who will turn 54 later this month, collected his winnings Saturday at Lucky Times in the form of a ceremonial check presentation.

He says he plans to use the money to buy a home and to improve his life, and late Saturday afternoon said he will donate $100,000 to STAR.

When Channel 2 News first met up with Ahsoak, he couldn't have been more excited. But as the day unfolded, Ahsoak's past came to light in an ironic intersection with the mission of the event.

Ahsoak says he's had a hard-luck life, and the money will help him turn that around. He grew up in foster homes and the Jesse Lee Home for Children in Seward.

In the past he said he has donated money to a children's home in South Dakota, but that could not immediately be verified.

Lucky Times' owners said they started the lottery with the best of intentions and really just wanted to help out a cause they believe in.

They hope just as many residents will want to participate in the charity lotteries to come.

Online Predators: Invading My Space

More spreading of the "1 in 5" myth! Wikipedia has a better description of what "Online Predator" represents, but, IMO, it is still one sided, and doesn't represent an unbiased opinion of what this is about. An online predator does not have to entail sex, it could be anything, like an identity thief, trying to get your personal information, or any other criminal organization, hate group, etc.  You could even consider, IMO, groups like Perverted-Justice to be an "Online Predator!"  A portion of the Wikipedia article is below.

An online predator is an Internet user who exploits vulnerable people, usually for sexual or financial purposes.

Adolescents and the elderly are most often the victims of online predators. Some experts recommend not providing personally identifiable information such as a name, password, phone number, address or credit card, or even Social Security numbers, though providing personal information is not usually associated with being targeted by Internet child predators. Prepubescent children are not often targeted.

Online victimization of minors can include requests to engage in sexual activities or discussions by an adult; unwanted exposure to sexual material (opening junk mail with naked pictures, etc.); online harassment, threats or other aggressive communications that are not sexual in nature but cause distress, fear or embarrassment.

While chat and instant messaging are most often used by online predators, they also appear in other places. For example, MySpace has been accused of attracting online predators. Online predators try to gradually seduce their targets through attention, affection, kindness, and even gifts, and often devote considerable time, money, and energy to this effort. They're aware of the latest music and hobbies likely to interest kids. They listen to and sympathize with kids' problems. Often, teens use "peer support" online forums to deal with their problems and predators often lurk on these online areas to look for their next vulnerable victim. They also try to ease young people's inhibitions by gradually introducing sexual content into their conversations or by showing them sexually explicit material. A 2007 study, however, found no cases of minors being targeted by Internet predators on the basis of information they had posted on social networking sites.

Software which attempts to monitor computer activity has seen some popularity with parents concerned about Internet predators.

Plugged In - Internet Safety

Notice the fear mongering techniques they use in the video? It's good to let people know of any potential danger, online or offline, but using fear and hysteria makes the matter worse, IMO.

Mom Creates Web Site For Teens

Now this is what being proactive and actually helping kids is all about, instead of becoming a vigilante and harassing people online! PetraLuna and others could learn something from this lady!

McAfee SiteAdvisor - Helps take the guesswork out of Web security

Click the image to visit the site


Click the image to visit the site

Internet Privacy Resources

Fact Sheets

Speeches & Articles

John Walsh Spreading Bogus Statistics About Online Issues (Fear Mongering)

Where does he get this 50% rate? Thin air I bet! Hell, I've been contacted online by people I don't know about 95% of the time, or more. So that doesn't prove anything. Are they being talked to by other peers, or adults. And about what? Just because someone talks to someone else online, whom they do not know, doesn't mean they are up to no good. Plus, the 50% is a good round number, not too large, not too small.

Studies I have here:

Prove this is just a blown out of proportion myth! I'd like to see this so called "study" he did. I bet it doesn't exist!

Yes, children and parents should be aware of the potential danger, and shown how to protect themselves, but blowing it way out of proportion and bloating it, to heighten the FEAR FACTOR does nobody justice. It just scares the hell out of people.

You can also view a discussing, by real experts, on this very issue, here:

But also, please see the other studies at the first link above.

NY - Mandatory Restrictions Ruled Invalid in Porn Case

View the article here


By Mark Hamblett - New York Law Journal

Mandatory curfew, electronic monitoring and other pretrial conditions for defendants indicted on child pornography offenses are unconstitutional, a federal magistrate judge has ruled.

Southern District of New York Magistrate Judge James Francis said portions of amendments to the Bail Reform Act of 1984 promulgated by the 2006 Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act violate the due process clause of the Fifth Amendment because they impose automatic restrictions on fundamental rights.

In United States v. Arzberger, 08 Cr. 894, Francis said those accused of possessing child pornography are entitled to an individualized determination at a bail hearing before being ordered to follow a curfew with electronic monitoring, surrender their weapons and refrain from contacting anyone involved in their cases.

Jason Arzberger's e-mail address was found by Europol agents during a search of the residence of an Italian producer of child pornography. When the agents learned that he had communicated several times in 2005 and 2006 with the producer about obtaining movies, an undercover FBI agent arranged to sell Arzberger pornographic DVDs depicting 12- and 14-year-old girls.

Arzberger was charged with one count of possessing child pornography. He appeared before Francis on Aug. 27, 2008, and was released on $100,000 bond secured by $10,000 in cash.

While he was ordered to undergo drug testing and a mental-health evaluation, Francis declined to order electronic monitoring.

Two days later, the government moved to add additional conditions as required by 18 U.S.C. §3142(c)(1)(B) and modify the terms of Arzberger's release.

Defense attorney Leonard Joy opposed, challenging the constitutionality of the amendments.

Joy had some case law to back up his arguments, as judges in three other federal jurisdictions had invalidated all or part of the mandatory conditions, including Western District of New York Magistrate Judge Leslie G. Foschio in United States v. Crowell, 2006 WL 3541736 (Dec. 7, 2006).

Regarding curfew with electronic monitoring, Francis said he agreed that it would "impinge on a constitutionally-protected liberty interest." He said that "the risk that a defendant will be erroneously deprived of the right to travel by the Adam Walsh Amendments is substantial."

He said a defendant must be allowed to present evidence at a bail hearing as to his "individual characteristics and the particular circumstances of the offense" and contest why such conditions are necessary to ensure his return to court and the safety of the community.

These procedural safeguards, he said, "would reduce the risk of erroneous deprivation at little cost."

Francis said that, until recently, he would not have considered it unreasonable that a defendant be required to surrender a firearm as a condition of pretrial release.

"This all changed," he said, with the recent U.S. Supreme Court decision in District of Columbia v. Heller, 128 S.Ct. 2783 (2008), where the court changed the course of Second Amendment jurisprudence by creating what he said was a "protectible liberty interest" in the possession of firearms.

Thus, in the absence of an individualized determination at a bail hearing, requiring the defendant to give up any firearms violates due process, he said.

The same is true of the First Amendment associational rights, which Francis said "could not be more directly affected than they are by the Adam Walsh Amendments: a person accused of certain crimes is categorically prohibited from any contact with a class of individuals."

He went on to find that the amendments survive a challenge under the excessive bail clause of the Eighth Amendment.

But he also said that "conditioning pretrial release on the relinquishment of constitutionally protected rights in circumstances where the conditions are not necessary to satisfy legitimate governmental purposes" would constitute excessive bail.

So while the government has "articulated legitimate goals, including the protection of the public in general and of minors in particular," whether each condition is "necessary or excessive" cannot be determined without an assessment of Arzberger's individual characteristics, he said.

Finally, the judge rejected a challenge to the amendments made by Joy on separation-of-powers grounds. Joy had contended that Congress was encroaching on the powers of the judiciary by setting mandatory bail conditions.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Amie N. Ely represented the government.