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Facebook tip leads to child porn arrest at Benedictine

Posted at 9:21 PM, Dec 16, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-22 08:23:18-05

GOOCHLAND COUNTY, Va. -- A substitute teacher at Benedictine College Preparatory was arrested Wednesday on child porn charges.

Rinku Costa was "was an occasional substitute teacher" from October through this month, according to a spokesperson for the Goochland-based school.

"After receiving a tip from Facebook regarding child pornography... the Goochland County Sheriff’s Office, in collaboration with Powhatan County Sheriff’s Office executed a search warrant at Benedictine Abbey, located at 12829 River Road in Goochland County," Goochland Sheriff
Steven Creasey wrote in an email. "In the process of executing the search warrant, two cell phones and a laptop computer were recovered."

Costa, 32 of Bangladesh, was charged with one felony count of possession of child pornography and nine felony counts of second or subsequent offense possession of child pornography.

He was booked at Henrico County Jail.

The school called Costa a "temporary guest of the Benedictine monastic community" who taught while "awaiting return to his home country of Bangladesh." A return delayed by COVID-19, the school said.

Rinku Costa.jpg
Rinku Costa

"Prior to serving in the classroom, Mr. Costa underwent a screening process by the school including fingerprinting, VIRTUS instruction, and a criminal background check, which did not reveal any information related to prior criminal conduct or charges," a statement from the school continued. "Immediately following his arrest, steps were taken to prevent Mr. Costa from having any access to school buildings and the monastery, and he will no longer be allowed on campus."

At this point in the investigation, there was no indication that Benedictine students or any local children were involved.

“We are deeply saddened and disturbed by the allegations brought against Mr. Costa," Jesse Grapes, president of the Benedictine Schools of Richmond, said. "Our first priority is to determine if any of our students and families have been impacted; however, we have been informed by authorities that there does not appear to be any impropriety involving any individuals."

Anyone with information was asked to call Lt. Henley or Investigator Ritter with the Goochland County Sheriff’s Office at 804-556-5349 or the Metro Richmond Crime Stoppers at 804-780- 1000.