Police: Man man facing sex charges after contacting boy with PS3
Updated: Friday, February 28 2014, 05:18 PM EST
ALBANY -- A Worcester, Massachusetts man appeared in federal court in Albany accused of an unthinkable crime. Authorities believe he may have convinced a ten year old Albany County boy to send him sexually-explicit videos of himself, because the man said he was in danger and the videos would help him stay alive.
Brian Belanger, 21, made a brief appearance but authorities claim he spent months in contact with that boy. Belanger allegedly told him he would be killed if the boy didn't do what he asked.
Belanger wore a green prison jump suit before a judge. The US Attorney's office claims Belanger first came in contact with the boy on a PlayStation 3 headset. Authorities say he told the child someone wanted to kill him and if he sent Belanger sexually-explicit videos of himself, Belanger could send them to the threatening person.
In a statement, the US Attorney alleges that Belanger "directed the child what to do in the videos & that over the course of approximately three months the child emailed Belanger numerous times, attaching video files to the emails that depict the child engaged in sexually-explicit conduct."
We've learned Belanger was a karate student in Massachusetts. The boy's father went to police after finding the emails on an iPad.
"We're sitting in our living room and we're using a console or a game controller and it doesn't seem like there could be any security or privacy risks," said Reg Harnish with Grey Castle Security.
Digital security experts say parental controls can be activated on video games. But the FBI offers simple advice you can use at home. Since anyone has access to these systems, talk to your kids. "If they're going to play online they should play with people they know," said Special Agent David Fallon.
"A lot of the safe guards are things we would do or recommend off-line," Harnish said. "Don't share information you don't want someone else to have. It might be your first name. If you've created an account and you're using your first name you may be asking for trouble.Belanger waived his right to bail and preliminary hearings. He could face a maximum of 30 years in prison and up to $250,000 in fines.