Fernando Rivas 'Sesame Street' Composer Arraigned on Child Porn Charges

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By Myles Collier, Christian Post Contributor
November 22, 2011|11:24 am

Fernando Rivas, an Emmy Award winning composer, was arraigned on charges of producing and distributing child pornography.

The judge ordered bail set at $300,000. Fernando posted bond with the required 10 percent needed to secure his release. He was placed under house arrest with no Internet access, and he is not allowed to be near children unless an adult is present.

The South Carolina Federal Court grand jury indicted charges on Rivas for production of child pornography, distribution of child pornography as well as transportation of child pornography. The indictment also alleged that he induced a child “to engage in sexually explicit conduct,” including exposing the child’s genitals, “for the purpose of producing visual depictions of such conduct,” according to news reports.

The Post and Courier reported that Rivas, 59, was initially arrested on April 19 after the Federal Bureau of Investigation looked into claims of child pornography being created at a residence in Charleston. The investigation was prompted after police in New Jersey arrested a man for possessing child pornography and traced it back to Rivas. When they arrived at his home, North Charleston police said they found images on his computer of a 4-year-old naked girl "restrained in handcuffs and other bondage-type devices.”

Rivas moved to Charleston in 1998. He worked as a jazz teacher at the private school Porter-Guad from 2002 until 2009. At that time, school officials said Rivas resigned “due to increasing work outside of his school obligations.”

“We are unaware of any connection between the charges against him and Porter-Gaud, but we are cooperating with law enforcement in their investigation,” said the school in a statement.

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Fernando Rivas was a Cuban born composer who graduated from the famed Julliard School in New York. He composed 15 musicals and wrote six scores for feature films. Rivas received Emmys for his work with Sesame Street in 1995 and 1996.

 

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