A landlord who was accused trying to intimidate tenants into performing sex acts rather than paying rent for properties he leased has been sentenced to 16 months in prison, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office.
Richard Bruno, 47, of Waterford, was arrested in 2016 after New London Police started investigating allegations that Bruno was trying to extort sexual acts in lieu of cash for properties he had leased to tenants, police said.
Police said they searched the hard drive of a computer at Bruno’s home and found 46 homemade videos depicting nine different females engaged in sexually explicit conduct. Most of the videos depicted Bruno engaging in sex acts with the females, including a tenant who was 17 years old at the time, according to officials.
On four occasions, Bruno videotaped the minor victim engaging in sexual acts with him at his company’s warehouse and he paid her in either marijuana or cash, according to authorities.
As detectives investigated, Bruno solicited a person he thought was a 13-year-old girl online and arranged to pay her money and meet up with her in New London for sexual acts, police said.
When he arrived at the location they set as the meeting place, police took him into custody.
He has been detained since he was arrested and pleaded guilty on May 8 to one count of production of child pornography.
Bruno was sentenced Thursday to 16 years in prison, followed by 10 years of supervised release for producing child pornography.
As part of his sentence, Bruno was ordered to forfeit his company’s New London warehouse, a multi-family residence he owns on West Coit Street in New London, and a van owned by his company.
He has also paid the victim restitution through a settlement in a separate federal civil case.