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Former CNN Producer Sentenced to 19 Years in Prison on Child Sex Charges

Former CNN producer John Griffin has been sentenced to more than 19 years in prison after pleading guilty to a criminal charge for luring a 9-year-old girl to a Vermont ski cabin for “unlawful sexual activity.” Griffin also faces 15 years of supervised release after he leaves prison, according to the sentence handed down Tuesday at a U.S. District Court hearing in Vermont, according to The Associated Press. He pleaded guilty in December to “using a facility of interstate commerce to attempt to persuade, induce, entice or coerce a minor to engage in unlawful sexual activity,” according to VTDigger. Two other charges against him were dropped as part of the plea deal. Griffin was fired by CNN shortly after being indicted. In addition to jail time, U.S. District Court Judge Judge William K. Sessions III ordered Griffin to pay $1.1 million in restitution. Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael Drescher, who prosecuted Griffin, wanted the former CNN producer to be jailed for more than 21 years. The defense sought a sentence of the minimum required under the deal, which was 10 years. “Short of ending a person’s life it’s hard to imagine a worse offense,” Drescher said, according to VTDigger. The girl Griffin has admitted sexually abusing three years ago appeared Tuesday via video, as did her grandmother. “The child that you raped was my granddaughter. You forever ruined a 9-year-old girl,” the grandmother said. “I’ll never trust anyone again,” the girl said. “You make me sad and angry,” she told Griffin. Sessions called the girl a “very courageous and smart and accomplished person” for having the strength to speak up. Griffin told the court he was “deeply remorseful.” The judge, however, was not moved. “I just find the behavior of Mr. Griffin to be beyond the pale,” Sessions said. According to VTDigger, Griffin had been accused of enticing a Nevada woman and her then-9-year-old daughter to visit him in July 2020 and paying more than $3,000 to cover their travel costs. While at his cabin in Ludlow, Vermont, the girl was forced into sex acts, prosecutors said. [firefly_poll] Fox News reported the evidence in the federal indictment against Griffin included a video of a “completely naked 9-year-old girl” shown with Griffin, according to court filings. “When confronted with this video during an interview by FBI agents, Griffin’s first response was merely to suggest he was not looking at the naked girl, despite that she was standing so close to him to be touching,” a pretrial detention memo said. Prosecutors said the incident that led to Griffin’s arrest was part of a pattern in which he would try to have parents of underage girls bring them to him for training about sex, according to the New York Post. This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.

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