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Big Island man in child porn investigation makes first court appearance | News

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Big Island man in child porn investigation makes first court appearance
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John Tucker

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow)- A Big Island man made an initial appearance in Federal Court in Honolulu Thursday, a day after he was arrested for allegedly producing and distributing child pornography.

John Tucker, 56, was shackled when he appeared in the courtroom of Federal Magistrate Judge Barry Kurren. He was dressed in a gray t-shirt and blue jeans, and was wearing glasses.

Tucker spoke only to answer questions from the judge with a simple, "yes, sir."

Tucker's attorney, Brian DeLima of Hilo, told the judge that Tucker would not contest the federal government's motion to detain him without bail. When Judge Kurren asked Tucker if this was true, Tucker responded, "That's correct, sir."

Hours after FBI agents and Big Island police executed a search warrant at the Hale Makamae Bed & Breakfast in the Leilani Estates subdivision just outside of Pahoa, Tucker turned himself in at the Hilo Police Department and was arrested without incident at approximately 9:30 p.m. Wednesday.

The case first came to the FBI's attention in 2010, when a series of photographs surfaced on the Internet that depicted a man, who sources confirmed as Tucker, engaging in graphic sexual acts with two pre-teenaged children, a girl and a boy. The photos were widely circulated among various illegal Internet forums for the sharing of child pornography.

Investigators for the FBI and the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children enhanced one of the photos to develop an image of what appears to be a 2008 Hawaiian Telcom phone book for Hawaii's Big Island in the background. The image led investigators to believe that the photos were taken between 2008 and 2010. A desktop computer in the background of another photo leads investigators to conclude that the photo was likely not taken in a hotel room.

According to court documents, investigators were able to interview the boy and the girl, who identified themselves and Tucker in the photos. Investigators also spent much of yesterday afternoon and evening searching Tucker's home. Court documents say a computer seized in the search contained other images of child pornography.

Tucker, who is married and has two children, has reportedly lived in Leilani Estates for 14 years. His attorney, DeLima, had no comment after the hearing.

Copyright 2012 Hawaii News Now. All rights reserved.

John Tucker in a photo released by the FBI
FBI Special Agent Tom Simon
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