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Police: Seemingly blank disks uncover child pornography

Alex Bassinne, 50, of Newport Beach faces more than nine years in state prison if convicted. He is also accused of lewd acts when he was a teacher in Santa Ana.

May 11, 2012|By Lauren Williams

A Newport Beach man's female relative accidentally stumbled upon child pornography on disks she thought were blank, court records allege.

But instead of Alex Bassinne's disks being usable, she found two videos on them — one depicting a girl believed to be between 10 and 12 who was performing oral sex — according to a search warrant affidavit.

Bassinne, 50, faces up to nine years and four months in state prison for the three felonies of which he stands accused, including possession of child pornography and lewd acts with a child, according to the Orange County district attorney's office. He was arrested May 3 and has posted $100,000 bail.

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FOR THE RECORD:
A previous version's headline incorrectly attributed information to the Orange County district attorney’s office. Child pornography was found on disks according to Newport Beach Police Department records.

From October 2006 to May 2010, Bassinne lived with his wife and daughter in a Laguna Niguel home of a relative while his Balboa Peninsula home was being built, court documents indicate.

After the family left to live in Newport, other family members moved into the Laguna Niguel home, where the seemingly blank disks containing the child pornography were found in 2011. They were among a desk that was being stored in the home's garage.

Items seized by authorities from Bassinne's peninsula home included a gun and black folder filled with "several pages of photos, including [a] picture of a nude child," according to a summary of the search warrant. Also confiscated were phones, external hard drives and two computers.

Bassinne is also accused of molesting two girls between 2009 and 2010 while he was a teacher in the Santa Ana Unified School District, according to the D.A.'s office.

In one instance, Bassinne allegedly looked down the shirt of a 13-year-old girl and grabbed her shirt, positioning it so he could see better when she tried to adjust it, prosecutors said.

In another occurrence, Bassinne allegedly touched the buttocks of a 15-year-old girl during a class trip, according to the D.A.'s office.

Police from Newport and Santa Ana Unified are working together to find any other potential victims. Anyone with information is asked to call Newport Det. David Syvock at (949) 644-3771, Santa Ana Unified police Sgt. Manuel Chavez at (714) 558-5739, or supervising investigator Lou Gutierrez at (714) 347-8794.

Bassinne will be asked to enter a plea in Orange County Superior Court on June 15.

lauren.williams@latimes.com

Twitter: @lawilliams30

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