Thursday, December 06, 2007

Bernie Ward indicted on child porn charges

Bernie Ward, a popular liberal talk show host at KGO in San Francisco has been indicted on federal child pornography charges, authorities said today.

Ward, 56, surrendered to federal authorities earlier today but the specifics of the allegations against him are under seal, officials said. He was indicted in Federal Court today on two counts of child pornography using the Internet.

"More than three years ago, Bernie was doing research for a book he was doing on hypocrisy in America," his attorney, Doron Weinberg said. As part of the research, Ward downloaded "a few images" of child pornography, and, Weinberg said, "it came to the attention of the government in late 2004."

"They investigated and they never found any involvement in child pornography other than this period that he accessed these images," Weinberg said. "The government knows that Bernie was doing this for an investigation he was doing for a book. But the government believes he violated the letter of the law and they have gone ahead and prosecuted him."

Weinberg stressed that "the fact that these events happened three years ago and they are just being prosecuted shows the fact that nobody believes that he is a child predator."

"He is just being prosecuted for a mistake he made (more than) three years ago," the lawyer said.

Federal authorities seized Ward's computer in early 2005 and there was no evidence of child pornography or any other impropriety, Weinberg added.

"We have been trying to convince the government that his is not something they should proceed with. They said, 'He violated the law, sorry.' "

Ward, a former Catholic priest, has hosted a nightly talk show on KGO 810 AM as well as GodTalk on Sundays. He had been a priest with the Society of the Precious Blood order.

Read more:

KGO 810AM
KCBS
San Jose Mercury News

3 comments:

jonath said...

Would they be prosecuting if the name was Limbaugh, Hannity, or, O'Reilly?

Just asking.

Anna said...

the indictment was unsealed yesterday...the local ABC affiliate had a report:

http://abclocal.go.com/kgo/story?section=news/iteam&id=5821709

the important thing here is the narrowness of the chronology, which lends credence to Ward's version of things:

"The indictment lists a narrow window of time in which Ward accessed and traded child porn -- December 23rd, 2004 and January 1st through the 13th, 2005.

Dean Johnson says that's good news for Ward.

"The timeframe in my mind really gives credence to what Mr. Ward said about this being an isolated incident, that it wasn't motivated by any desire to possess child pornography or exploit children, but rather that he was researching a book or whatever he claimed," says Johnson."

I'm sorry--I've listened to Bernie for a few years, now, and this story just rings WRONG. this just isn't him, at all. (and using the US attorneys for vendettas is VERY Bush.)

also--the .pdf of the indictment can be downloaded at the above page.

Victoria said...

How much do you want to bet that this is a set-up? Malicious prosecution?


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