Statement made available for all cases involving her heavily downloaded image

Date: 2007-01-11
Source: thestar.com

Statement made available for all cases involving her heavily downloaded image

Peter Small
Toronto Star

A cry of pain from a 13-year-old child pornography victim echoed through a Toronto courtroom yesterday when her victim-impact statement was read at a sentencing hearing.

"I want every single person who downloads my picture to go to jail and really be punished as much as possible," Russian-born Masha Allen wrote in a statement filed at the sentencing hearing of former Air Canada flight attendant Andy Kwok.

"Child pornography is not a victimless crime. I am a victim and I still suffer every day and every time someone sees me being abused," wrote the girl, who was abused and photographed by a Pennsylvania man who had adopted her.

Masha's lawyer made the one-page statement available to North American police forces for use in child pornography sentencing hearings in which her image had been collected by offenders, said Det. Const. Bill McGarry of the Toronto police child exploitation unit.

Toronto police have had the statement for six months and, in the past two, have included it in sentencing materials, said Det. Const. Scott Purches.

But yesterday was believed to be the first time portions of Masha's statement were heard at a Toronto sentencing hearing. It has been filed among materials in about six other cases.

The girl was identified after Toronto police made public in February 2005 pictures taken by her abuser.

Investigators erased her image from the photos but posted the backgrounds, which included an elevator, a fountain and a bed in a hotel. Two Toronto-area tipsters identified the locale of some of the pictures as a room at a Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Fla.

The tip eventually led U.S. authorities to her abuser, Matthew Mancuso, 46, who was already serving time in Pennsylvania.

In Kwok's case, a sexually explicit image of the girl was among 1,919 child-pornography photos found on his computer.

He also had 60 child porn videos on his hard drive. The children ranged in age from 18 months to 12 years. Ninety-five images involved bondage or physical abuse.

Kwok pleaded guilty to simple possession in November.

Prosecutor Mary Humphrey tendered Masha's statement in Superior Court and read some of it into the record yesterday.

Mancuso, a divorced engineer from Pittsburgh, adopted Masha from a Russian orphanage in 1998 when she was 5.

"Matthew made me have sex with him every day," she wrote. "Sometimes he chained me in the basement and took pictures of me with dildos or dressed in a wedding gown. ... He did and made me do terrifying things."

Investigators say Mancuso took hundreds of pictures of Masha, in a variety of humiliating poses, and uploaded at least 200 to the Internet.

Now 14, she has waived her right to anonymity and last year testified about her experience to a U.S. congressional subcommittee.

Law enforcement officials believe 80 per cent of pedophiles under investigation around the world have in their collections at least one picture of Masha.

"I know that these pictures will never end and that my `virtual abuse' will go on forever," Masha wrote.

"I ask that you think about me and everything I have gone through when you sentence this person to prison."

Humphrey is asking Justice Anne Molloy to sentence Kwok to an 18-month jail term.

Defence lawyer Jacob Stilman is seeking a conditional sentence, partly house arrest, drawing on a psychiatrist's opinion that Kwok is not a pedophile, but rather fantasized that he himself was the victim shown in the photos or movies.

Molloy is to sentence Kwok on Feb. 8

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