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Springfield man sentenced to 30 years in prison for child sex crimes

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. — A Springfield man was convicted today in federal court of sexual exploitation of a child.

According to a Department of Justice news release, Jason T. Bernard, 54, was sentenced to 30 years and five months in federal prison without the possibility of parole.


Bernard was also sentenced to lifetime supervised release after incarceration and ordered to pay $171,000 in restitution.

According to the release, the investigation began on April 7, 2022, when nine CyberTips were received from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. The CyberTips involved 145 images of child pornography, some victims as young as toddlers, that Bernard uploaded to Verizon Cloud.

After identifying Bernard as the one who uploaded the video, North Carolina police connected him to an investigation they were working on. For two years, Bernard had been sending money, alcohol and sex toys to a child victim. In exchange, the child victim sent Bernard pornographic images and videos of herself.

Bernard admitted to having several conversations with the child victim about bringing her to Missouri for a paid sexual encounter.

He had more than 700 photos and videos of the child victim.

Police said she was 12 or 13 when the incident began.

Investigators found more than 1,500 photos and videos of child pornography on Bernard's phone.

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