Man makes tearful statement at child porn sentencing

A former oilfield company office worker is going to jail after pleading guilty to having child pornography images on his home and work computers.

A former oilfield company office worker is going to jail after pleading guilty to having child pornography images on his home and work computers.

Bradley Willford, 55, tearfully stated his “deep regret” and shame before being given a 15-month prison sentence and three years of probation for one count of possessing child pornography, by Judge Jim Hunter in Red Deer provincial court on Friday.

“The gravity of this offence is extremely high,” said Hunter, because some of the exploited children in the 530 seized images were known to Willford.

Both special prosecutor Jenny Rees of Calgary and Willford’s lawyer, Pat Penny of Red Deer, agreed on the sentence, based on some mitigating factors — such as Willford’s guilty plea, his past military service, and lack of previous criminal record — but also some aggravating factors.

Reese told the court that not all of the children in the computer images were photographed in sex acts. Police also found ordinary, non-sexual pictures of children who were known to Willford, but he had videotaped himself masturbating on these images.

He then shared these videos with other pedophiles.

“These were not nameless, faceless kids from other parts of the world,” said Hunter, who admonished Willford for his “moral culpability” over a number of years in “nothing short of child abuse.”

Although the offender is considered at low risk to re-offend, he was ordered to submit his DNA to the national sex offender registry. And for the next 10 years, he cannot seek employment that would put him in a position of trust to children under age 16.

Some of his probationary conditions include not having access to a personal computer outside work, and not being alone with a child under age 16 without another adult present who is aware of this condition.

Before his sentencing, an emotional Willford expressed remorse to the judge, saying he apologizes to his family, “especially to my wife … I let her down.”

The Crown previously dropped two other charges, of accessing and distributing child pornography.

Police began investigating after an information technology specialist discovered child porn images while doing routine maintenance on Willford’s work computer on Sept. 14. His oilfield job was terminated a few days later.

lmichelin@bprda.wpengine.com

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