CRIME

Man formerly with Utah Attorney General’s Office arrested on new sex abuse charges

Sep 15, 2022, 10:05 PM | Updated: Sep 16, 2022, 9:21 am

SALT LAKE CITY — A former attorney in the Utah Attorney General’s office was back behind bars Thursday, about a week after he was released and after authorities say their investigation revealed evidence he not only downloaded but also produced child pornography.

According to the Utah County Sheriff’s Office, Gary Lee Bell, who was formerly arrested on Aug. 24 for sexual exploitation of a minor was out of jail by Sept. 7, after a judge ordered his release.

On Sept. 13, Bell was arrested again after detectives discovered child pornography on Bell’s phone they believe he produced.

“Disturbing is a major understatement about the concern we have for what was happening there,” said Sgt. Spencer Cannon with the Utah County Sheriff’s Office. “We believe that any young children who might have interaction with him might be at risk.”

Bell was arrested in August after a tip from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children that child pornography was being downloaded at an IP address linked to Bell.

Detectives obtained a search warrant, arrested Bell and seized several electronic devices.

He was released but ordered to wear a GPS tracker.

However, following the seizure found a memory card with images and video of an infant being sexually abused.

According to a statement from Utah County Sheriff’s Office, “Detectives believe these images and video were actually produced by Bell and not just downloaded by him from an external source.”

Detectives returned to Bell’s home and arrested him again.

“It’s more frightening for anybody who has had contact with Mr. Bell to realize that not only has he downloaded material produced by others, we believe he is also producing similar kinds of material photographs and video of victims that he has directly, sexually abused,” Cannon said.

Cannon also noted Bell’s time in the Utah Attorney General’s Office made the charges even more disturbing.

Bell was booked into the Utah County Jail for aggravated sex abuse of a child, aggravated sodomy of a child and 12 counts of sexual exploitation of a minor. He is being held without bail.

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Man formerly with Utah Attorney General’s Office arrested on new sex abuse charges