Houston, Texas - A retired Kansas native, who was residing in Panama, was sentenced Friday to 210 months in prison, for use of sexually explicit depictions of a minor for importation into the United States, announced Assistant Attorney General Brian A. Benczkowski of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division and U.S. Attorney Ryan K. Patrick of the Southern District of Texas.
Jebediah Dishman, 72, of Fredonia, Kansas, pleaded guilty on April 6, 2018, to an information charging him with use of sexually explicit depictions of a minor for importation into the United States. Today, U.S. District Judge Ewing Werlein Jr. of the Southern District of Texas imposed the nearly 18-year sentence to be followed by 25 years of supervised release during which time he will have to comply with numerous requirements designed to restrict his access to children and the internet. At the hearing today, he was also ordered to pay a $5,000 fine and $3,000 in restitution. Dishman will also be ordered to register as a sex offender.
According to admissions made in conjunction with a plea agreement, in September 2014, Dishman began an approximately six-month trip to several countries in Southeast Asia. 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. 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.
The FBI Houston Field Office conducted the investigation with the cooperation of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations. Trial Attorneys James E. Burke IV and William M. Grady of the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section (CEOS) and Assistant U.S. Attorney Sherri Zack of the Southern District of Texas prosecuted the case. Assistant U.S. Attorney Elly Peirson of the Central District of Illinois, previously on detail at CEOS, also served as a vital member of the prosecution team at earlier stages of the litigation.
This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice. Led by U.S. Attorneys’ Offices and CEOS, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state and local resources to better locate, apprehend and prosecute individuals who exploit children via the Internet, as well as to identify and rescue victims.