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MOLESTER GETS 165 YEARS; VICTIM DESCRIBES FEAR OF INFECTION BY HIV CARRIER.

Byline: Don Holland Daily News Staff Writer

A habitual sex offender infected with HIV has been sentenced to 165 years to life in prison for repeatedly molesting a teen-ager he picked up at an adult video store.

Santa Barbara photographer Sean De France, 40, buried his face in his hands as his victim described on video the nightmare he is living, not knowing whether he will contract the virus that causes AIDS.

``Sometimes I wonder if I'm supposed to be here alive or if I'm supposed to be dead, 6 feet under the ground,'' the 15-year-old boy said in a videotaped victim impact statement played late Thursday during De France's sentencing hearing.

Asked how he thought De France should be punished, the youth detailed a long list of barbaric tortures. ``Just take him and tar and feather him . . . and do like they did in (the film) `Braveheart' - torture him and tear his insides out.''

In a bid to keep De France from being sentenced to life under the state's ``three strikes, you're out'' law for repeat offenders, the defense unsuccessfully sought to have a 1983 conviction for child molestation eliminated from consideration.

``Mr. De France is exactly what the people had in mind when they passed the `three strikes,' '' Superior Court Judge Bruce Clark said in sentencing him to six consecutive terms of 25 years to life.

De France received an additional 15 years for five special-circumstance counts of knowing he had HIV when he had sex with the boy.

He will be imprisoned at Atascadero State Hospital, which treats sex offenders.

Outside court, Deputy Public Defender Doug Daily said De France was ``absolutely devastated'' by the sentence.

Initially charged with more than a dozen counts, De France pleaded guilty last month.

Deputy District Attorney Ed Ulloa called De France a sexual predator who took advantage of the emotionally frail boy and his developmentally disabled adult brother, who also worries he might contract the human immunodeficiency virus. They are being tested every three months for HIV.

De France befriended the teen and his brother at an adult-oriented store in Port Hueneme. A few days later, the youth called De France and the three agreed to meet for a meal. Afterward, De France took them to a motel, where he and the teen-ager watched a pornographic movie and had sex.

De France videotaped some of the encounters, which Ulloa said are being traded over the Internet by pedophiles around the world.
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Publication:Daily News (Los Angeles, CA)
Date:Jun 27, 1998
Words:410
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