A father checked his child’s phone. Now, a man 700 miles away will do life in prison.

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Port St. Lucie’s Scott Trader, 32, got an unusually long sentence Thursday — life in federal prison — even for someone pleading guilty to multiple child pornography and sexual abuse charges.
Then again, when Homeland Security investigators executed a search warrant on Trader’s home on June 1, they found him in the bedroom with his wife — and 10 media storage cards, three phones, an external hard drive and a laptop all with child pornography, some of it involving a 2-year-old put in Trader’s care. One of the videos includes Trader making that toddler kiss his penis.
None of this would have been found had a Thomasville, North Carolina, father not examined his 9-year-old daughter’s smartphone. 
According to the facts agreed upon by Trader and prosecutors, that father found sexually explicit chatter between his daughter and “Scott” on the “SayHi” application. He contacted local police on May 30, which brought Homeland Security into the investigation. Homeland Security found a conversation in which Trader repeatedly asked for nude photos. The girl sent Trader fully clothed photos. Upon the girl telling him her age, Trader sent, “Aw, you’re very pretty for your age, You look sexy in those pajamas.’’
Court documents say, “In response to Trader’s requests, the victim eventually sent at least one photo of her vagina and one photo of her pulling her shirt up, exposing her nipples. … Trader also sent that same victim a child pornography video using SayHi.”
Trader also sent a video of himself masturbating, “along with a still image which depicted Trader’s face in his bedroom, along with numerous other photos.”
Trader’s SayHi profile included his username for the “Kik” app and that profile photo matched Trader’s SayHi profile picture. Kik responded to an emergency disclosure request from Homeland Security with account information that tracked the account holder to a Port St. Lucie address. They quickly had Trader’s driver’s license and criminal history.
That history included a 2012 arrest by Port St. Lucie police for promoting a sexual performance by a child, lewd behavior and possession of child pornography. Those charges were dropped. Trader pleaded no contest and had withheld adjudication to felony child neglect. In December, he was arrested for lewd behavior — molesting a victim under the age of 12. That case remains open.
In August, Trader’s wife filed for divorce, a dissolution granted Oct. 18. He pleaded guilty Sept. 29 to enticement of a minor to engage in sexual activity; distribution of material containing visual depictions of sexual exploitation of minors; possession of matter containing visual depictions of sexual exploitation of minors; and production of material containing visual depictions of sexual exploitation of minors.

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