Naughton had created a secret online chat persona named "hotseattle," and used it to groom a 13-year-old girl calling herself "KrisLA." In September of 1999, the then-34-year-old executive vice president working for the Walt Disney Internet Group arranged a sex date with the child, flying out to Los Angeles on a private Disney jet. Luckily, KrisLA turned out not be a tween girl after all, but an FBI agent tasked with trapping early adopter child predators.
Naughton, who was also in possession of a vast collection of child pornography, was arrested, fired, and divorced in quick succession. The situation looked pretty dire, but he had one ace up his sleeve: He knew that people were absolute numbskulls when it came to the newfangled internet.
Naughton invoked the now-infamous "Fantasy Defence," claiming that obviously everything on the internet was one big fantasy, and he had always assumed that KrisLA was an adult pretending to a girl. In fact, he never really expected to have sex with anyone on his trip down south, because who gets laid by surfing the computers? Amirite, Boomers? He even managed to convince several jury members that he didn't know there was child porn on his computer because it had been auto-downloaded from pedophile websites which he, a non-pedophile, had frequently visited.
This preposterous defense worked well enough to deadlock the jury, forcing the DA to offer a reduced deal whereby Naughton only had to plead guilty to possession of child pornography. For that heinous, disgusting crime, he had to serve exactly zero days of jail. Instead he made a deal with the FBI to develop software to track sexual predators online free of charge, saving the government millions of dollars. So a guy with a computer full of child porn who traveled across state lines to have sex with a 13-year-old didn't spend a single day in prison because people in 1999 were bad at computers. Good job, internet.
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