MIL-OSI USA: Two Charged for Involvement with Online Groups Dedicated to Monkey Torture and Mutilation

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Source: US State of California

Two individuals were charged this week for their involvement with online groups dedicated to creating and distributing videos depicting acts of extreme violence and sexual abuse against monkeys.

Nicholas T. Dryden, of Ohio, and Giancarlo Morelli, of New Jersey, were charged with conspiracy to create and distribute so-called “animal crush videos,” and with distributing animal crush videos. Dryden is also charged with the creation of animal crush videos, as well as with production, distribution and receipt of a visual depiction of the sexual abuse of children because a minor was paid to abuse the monkeys.

According to court documents, in March and April 2023, the two co-defendants allegedly conspired to create and distribute videos depicting acts of sadistic violence against baby, adolescent and adult monkeys. The conspirators allegedly funneled money through Dryden, who then paid the minor in Indonesia to commit the requested acts on camera.

The videos alleged to have been created as part of the conspiracy included depictions of monkeys having their genitals burned, having their genitals cut with scissors, being sodomized with a wooden skewer and being sodomized with a spoon.

The conspiracy charge carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison, the charges related to the creation and distribution of animal crush videos each carry a maximum penalty of seven years in prison and the charges of producing and distributing depictions of the sexual abuse of children each carry a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison. A federal district court judge will determine any sentence after considering the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.

Assistant Attorney General Todd Kim of the Justice Department’s Environment and Natural Resources Division and U.S. Attorney Kenneth L. Parker for the Southern District of Ohio made the announcement.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and FBI investigated the case.

Senior Trial Attorney Adam Cullman of the Environment and Natural Resources Division’s Environmental Crimes Section and Assistant U.S. Attorney Tim Oakley for the Southern District of Ohio are prosecuting the case.

An indictment is merely an allegation. All defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.