Crime & Courts

Tourist caught Kansas retiree committing child sex crimes in another country

A retired Kansas man living abroad admitted he was caught by a tourist as he committed child sex crimes in another country.

Jebediah Dishman, 72, of Fredonia, was sentenced Friday in federal court to 210 months, or 17 1/2 years, in prison, the U.S. Department of Justice said in a news release. Dishman pleaded guilty last year to using sexually explicit depictions of a minor for importation into the United States.

Dishman, a retired Kansas native, had been living in Panama, the Justice Department said. His prison sentence will be followed by 25 years of supervised release, where his access to children and the internet will be limited. He was ordered to pay a $5,000 fine and $3,000 in restitution, and he must register as a sex offender.

Dishman admitted in his plea agreement that he left on a six-month trip to several countries in Southeast Asia in September 2014.

“During his trip to Indonesia, another tourist observed Dishman engaging in suspicious interactions with minors, masturbating while watching minors and using a tablet to take photographs of a three-year-old German child,” according to the Justice Department release.

“The tourist confronted Dishman, seized his tablet and turned it over to local authorities. U.S. law enforcement later reviewed the tablet pursuant to a search warrant and discovered sexually explicit images of minors, including the German child, as well as internet searches indicating an interest in the sex trafficking of minors in Southeast Asia.”

A Texas grand jury in 2017 indicted Dishman on charges of engaging in illicit sexual conduct with a minor in a foreign country, producing child pornography, sex trafficking children, and obtaining custody and control of a minor for the purpose of producing child pornography.

The investigation was conducted by the FBI Houston Field Office in conjunction with the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations. The case was brought as part of the Justice Department’s Project Safe Childhood.

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