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Child Exploitation
09/30/2011

Florida man indicted after videotaping dozens of females, including minors, using a tanning bed that he had equipped with video recording capability

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — A Florida man was indicted on child pornography charges Thursday by a federal grand jury in Jacksonville, following an investigation by the Bradford County Sheriff's Office, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI).

Doyce Dean Griffis, 48, of Starke, Fla., is charged with seven counts of production of child pornography, two counts of receiving child pornography, and one count of possession of child pornography.

According to court documents, from February 2000 until April 26 of this year, Griffis operated and maintained a tanning bed in an outbuilding at his residence located in Starke.

Griffis engaged in a business operation in which customers paid to use the tanning bed. Customers made payments by placing money in a payment slot in the wall of the room of the outbuilding and gained entry into the space using an entry code, provided by Griffis, to unlock the door.

According to the indictment, customers believed that space containing the tanning bed was secure, and that their privacy would be protected. However, unbeknownst to his customers, the room had been equipped by Griffis with a two-way mirror that allowed him to view the room from a second concealed room. Griffis also made a hole in an air vent near the foot of the tanning bed that allowed him to view the customers as they lay inside the tanning bed. Using the two-way mirror and the hole in the air vent, Griffis surreptitiously made video recordings of dozens of female customers, including minors.

On each of the production counts, Griffis faces 15 to 30 years in federal prison. On each of the receipt counts, he faces five to 20 years in prison. On the possession count, he faces a maximum penalty of 10 years in federal prison.

Griffis was arrested on April 26 and is currently in state custody in Bradford County on related charges.

This case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney D. Rodney Brown.

The investigation was part of Operation Predator, a nationwide ICE initiative to identify, investigate and arrest those who prey on children, including human traffickers, international sex tourists, Internet pornographers, and foreign-national predators whose crimes make them deportable.

ICE encourages the public to report suspected child predators and any suspicious activity through its toll-free hotline at 1-866-DHS-2-ICE or by completing its online tip form.

Suspected child sexual exploitation or missing children may be reported to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, an Operation Predator partner, at 1-800-843-5678 or http://www.cybertipline.com.