Guilty plea entered for illegal guns, child porn
Waldorf man charged by feds after ‘bunker’ was raided
A man found with a vast arsenal of illegal machine guns, rifles, destructive devices and an archive of child pornography, after federal agents raided an underground bunker hidden inside his Waldorf home last May, pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court of Greenbelt on Monday.
Caleb Andrew Bailey, 31, who had been elected in the 2016 primary as a delegate to attend the Republican National Convention in support of Donald Trump, was
found with 14 machine guns, 14 unregistered short-barreled rifles, 20 grenade launchers, six thermite grenades, as well as an untold number of legally-owned firearms stashed inside the hidden bunker, according to court records. In a detention hearing last year, Bailey’s attorney — arguing in favor of a bond — told the court that the vast majority of the weapons were legal.
The case began after a package, mailed by Bailey, ruptured at a U.S. Postal Service facility in February 2016. Inside the package, which was addressed to a firearms store in Wisconsin, police found explosive ammunition.
When police raided Bailey’s home in May, they recovered an enormous cache of weapons, hidden cameras and electronic devices containing a vast collection of child pornography — about 600 videos, prosecutors said in court. Some appeared to have been downloaded from the internet, but the government said Bailey also used hidden cameras to secretly record three naked teenage boys so he could later watch them for his own sexual satisfaction.
From March 2014 to January 2016, Bailey produced more than 100 videos capturing the boys’ genitals, with whom he would often travel with to attend ATV riding events, according to a news release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office of Maryland.
Bailey lived alone in a home located on a 75acre plot of land owned by his father, Collins Bailey, a former vice chair of the Maryland Republican Party, who owns a wholesale lumber business.
When law enforcement swooped in on Bailey’s home, a 17-year-old boy at the residence, directed by Bailey, attempted to hide a Panasonic Toughbook laptop, a Sony camera and a Seagate external hard drive in the woods behind the home, covering them with leaves by a footbridge, according to his plea agreement. Police recovered the electronic devices, which were then forensically analyzed to reveal a large amount of child pornography.
“He’s secretive. He’s a ghost,” said Assistant U.S. Attorney Jennifer Sykes during the May 2016 detention hearing. “He’s deceived so many people … these minors who trusted him.”
On a hard drive recovered by police, investigators found folders named after each of the three boys, court proceedings revealed. Inside the folders were sub-folders labeled “hidden camera videos,” prosecutors said. Footage from the bathroom camera is aimed toward the shower, focused on the boys’ genitals.
“This was not inadvertent,” Sykes said. “This was purposeful.”
Judge Paul Grimm, who retired as a lieutenant colonel in the U.S. Army Reserve, called the weapons cache discovered in Bailey’s underground bunker “simply jaw-dropping in its magnitude,” adding that he has never seen an arsenal of that size.
“Mr. [William] Bennett, how did the family not know about it?” Grimm asked Bailey’s attorney during the detention hearing, wondering how Bailey could afford to amass such an array of weapons.
His family knew he collected firearms, Brennan replied, but “they absolutely did not know the extent of this.”
Brennan indicated that Bailey may have siphoned off some of his family’s property.
If the court accepts his plea agreement, Bailey will be required to register as a sex offender where he lives, where he is employed and where he is a student. He is scheduled to appear before Judge Grimm on Nov. 30, subject to between 10 to 27 years in prison.