Alan Berlin, known in the furry community as Alan T. Panda, has been sentenced to six to twelve years in prison. In May, he had been convicted of trying to arrange a sexual encounter with a 15-year-old boy.
Through online chats, Berlin had attempted to arrange a meeting with the boy, with the aim of having sex in a shed in the boy's back yard. During sentencing on Tuesday, Berlin stood by his claim that he did not know that the boy was a juvenile, and thought that he was chatting with "another adult furry who was pretending to be a juvenile dolphin".
Judge Todd A. Hoover countered that Berlin was lying, and that it was "evident from the sado-masochistic (chats)" that Berlin knew the boy was underage. Hoover ordered Berlin to serve eight years on probation after completing his prison sentence, which begins on June 8. He must also register with police for life as a sex offender.
During his court appearance, Berlin stated that he had "given up his furry role-play". Defense attorney William T. Tully said he would discuss with Berlin the possibility of an appeal.
In the furry community, we don’t have a significant problem with homophobia. But we do have a problem with hatred towards some of the more unusual sexual orientations and interests, such as transexuals, babyfurs, zoophiles, and more. In all cases, people are being attacked for things that are innate.
Interesting read, if provocative at times.
Berlin, a fursuiter, babyfur, and "daddyfur/caretaker with a cub side", first made the news in 2009, when, on May 28, he was arrested on charges of propositioning an underage boy over the Internet. After the boy's parents found sexually explicit messages on his computer, they contacted the Attorney General's Child Predator Unit; two days later, Berlin was arrested.
The trial of Alan Berlin, known in the furry fandom as Alan T. Panda, has begun. Berlin, a resident of Carlisle, Pennsylvania, was arrested on May 28, 2009, on accusations that he had propositioned a fifteen-year-old boy over the internet. His arrest came after the boy's parents found sexually explicit messages on his computer and they contacted the Attorney General's Child Predator Unit.
Amongst furries, Berlin presented himself as a "daddyfur and caretaker" who was "looking for a babyfur to be (his) mate and companion in a long-term committed relationship." When Berlin's home was searched, wolf and cat-like costumes were found, and it was alleged that Berlin discussed dressing up in animal costumes and engaging in sex.
Update (14 Apr): The jury failed to reach a verdict. A new trial is set for May.
Berlin came to the attention of the media in May 2009, when he was first arrested for unlawful contact with a minor. According to investigators, Berlin, a resident of Carlisle, Pennsylvania, had been in communication with the teen for several weeks and had proposed travelling to the boy's home to have sex in the backyard, and in a shed on his parents' property.
In the furry fandom, Berlin was a fursuiter, babyfur, and "daddyfur/caretaker with a cub side". The media noted Berlin's connection to the fandom, as investigators believed that he and the boy had met on a furry internet site. When Berlin's home was searched, wolf and cat-like costumes were found, and it was alleged that Berlin had discussed dressing up in animal costumes as part of having sex with the boy.
Four furs' belongings lie in ruins today after a fire in Millvale, Pennsylvania.
The four-alarm blaze took two hours to quench. No injuries were reported, but the first house was gutted, and the second was badly damaged by smoke and fire suppression.
Berlin, now 41, worked for the Pennsylvanian Senate for over 15 years prior to his arrest in May 2009. While not well-known within the fandom, he had a Pounced.org profile describing himself as a "Daddyfur" and "Caretaker", and allegedly used fursuits to solicit the minor.
Read more: Penn. 'daddyfur' charged with teen contact
Berlin's fate will be decided on January 14th; anywhere from probation to seven years in jail.
As the days count down until the general election on May 6th, Parliament is now starting to push through the final pieces of legislation for the current government. While many people have been focusing on the Digital Economy Bill, Parliament yesterday quietly passed legislation that may effect furries more than any other.
The Cartoon Law has made it illegal to create or possess imagery of minors (characters under-18 years of age), without discretion to species or the manner in which that imagery has been created. In furry terms, artwork of characters under-18 - be them engaging in a sexual act or having exposed genitalia - are henceforth illegal. This also includes imagery of sexual acts occurring in the presence of a minor.
It doesn't just affect furries however, lolicon (a form of hentai depicting children) is also made illegal under the new law.
40-year-old Pennsylvanian Alan David Berlin — known as Alan T. Panda, Furrypanda and Alan Panda Bear — was charged this Thursday with unlawful contact with a minor (related to involuntary deviate sexual intercourse); a first-degree felony punishable by up to 20 years in prison and a $25,000 fine. He has also been accused of five related second-degree and third-degree felonies. He is being held in Dauphin County Jail on $250,000 bail.
Alan, who lives in Carlisle, PA, allegedly chatted with the 15-year-old over the past two months, with discussions including the proposal that he travel to the boy's home in Harrisburg and that they have sex in the back yard while his parents slept. The complaint also mentioned requests for nude photos and suggestions of a meeting between the boy and another adult, with offers of a hotel room if Berlin could take pictures of them having sex.