Child pornography charges against former principal dismissed

(WOWT file image)
Published: Oct. 14, 2020 at 5:20 PM CDT
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LINCOLN, Neb. (KOLN) - Federal child pornography charges against the former principal of St. Joseph Catholic School in Beatrice have been dismissed, according to court records.

Marlan Burki, of Tecumseh, was previously facing a federal charge of producing child pornography.

However, according to court documents, the government made a motion on Wednesday to dismiss the charges without prejudice. That motion was granted by a federal judge.

Without prejudice means the case can be brought against Burki again.

“At present, there is additional investigation which the Government seeks to accomplish before this matter is submitted for indictment including forensics analysis which needs to be completed on numerous locked devices. In addition, there is evidence, including digital evidence, which needs to be reviewed,” the records state.

The court records show that the government has 30 days since the time of an arrest to file an indictment charging an individual. However, the prosecution stated in court documents additional time was needed.

In a court hearing on Oct. 8, a judge ruled there was probable cause to believe that Burki was a man known to the FBI as “John Doe 42.” The FBI Omaha Division sent out a picture of “John Doe 42” on Sept. 30, asking for the public’s help identifying him.

The FBI said on Sept. 30 the wanted man “may have information about the identity of a child victim in an ongoing sexual exploitation investigation.”

During the Oct. 8 court case, the prosecution said multiple people identified Burki as John Doe 42. But the defense brought in a Sarpy County Sheriff that testified that Burki and John Doe 42 were not the same people.

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