An American airline pilot has been handed a life sentence for hunting down and raping vulnerable Filipino children.
As we previously reported, Michael Carey Clemans was found guilty by a federal jury in Sacramento last September.
According to prosecutors, the 57-year-old raped girls as young as seven, seeking out vulnerable children such as “typhoon survivors” and “orphans”.
Speaking today (Tuesday, January 23) US attorney McGregor Scott said: “Clemans committed unspeakable acts in pursuit of his sexual obsession with children.
“He is a sophisticated offender who leveraged technology and the economic disadvantages of the Filipino children he targeted to commit his crimes.”
In 2014, Clemans was living in Bangkok and working as a pilot on a small domestic airline. It was then he began to conspire with a Filipino woman, Lyan Tandeg, to produce child pornography.
After he had returned to his parents’ Sacramento home in April 2015, he continued to communicate and conspire with Tandeg by email.
Clemans instructed the woman to find him vulnerable Filipino children. Another conspirator, Shellina Atad, was encouraged to take guardianship of the victims.
In one sickening message, he wrote:
i want to be able to get my photos and arrange sex with the underage girls. i do not want you or me to get into trouble so we have to be very very careful. that is the reason i mentioned orphanages or runaways or abandoned girls from the typhoons. i am looking for girls that are homeless that will not argue and will have no obligation but to have sex”
Court documents say he paid Tandeg about $6,000 to buy a digital camera and shoot sexually explicit photos of the victims. He would then use these images to select his victims.
Investigators found three of the children who posed for pornographic photos at Clemans’ direction, including one called “Angel.” At the time they were seven, nine and 10 years old. Prosecutors brought the three from the Philippines to Sacramento to testify at the trial.
The court was also told that seized digital devices from his family home contained 27,469 images of child pornography.
Clemans now faces a mandatory minimum sentence of 30 years in prison on charges of “buying children” and a maximum statutory penalty of life in prison and a $250,000 fine.
The two Filipino women, Tandeg and Atad, were also arrested in November 2015. They were convicted and sentenced to 15-year prison terms.