San Diego FBI agents arrested a man on charges he conspired to kidnap a baby with a pediatric nurse who is accused of molesting his newborn foster child.
Bartolomeo Bavarella, 31, of San Diego, was wanted on federal child pornography charges.
Up until early Thursday, when officials arrested him in Oceanside, the FBI had been looking for the public's help in finding him. Bavarella self surrendered at the Oceanside Police Department after an agent made arrangements with him.
On Jan. 13, a U.S. Magistrate Judge authorized the arrest warrant after a federal complaint charged Bavarella with violation of Title 18, possession of images of minors engaged in sexually explicit conduct.
The FBI in San Diego connected Bavarella to former Kaiser Permanente pediatric nurse Michael Lutts, who was accused in October of performing sex acts on an infant and videotaping it and potentially doing a similar thing to another baby.
When officers executed a federal search warrant at Lutts’ house in August, they said they found sexually explicit images of a two-month-old child produced by Lutts at his house. When they reviewed Lutts' iPhone, they say they found messages between Lutts and Bavarella.
“The messages included direction to Lutts’ residence, as well as plans to kidnap a female child,” the FBI statement said.
When the FBI executed a court-authorized search warrant for Bavarella’s email account, they say they found six child pornography images from an individual dated August 2013.
Agents did not identify the sender who was later arrested in 2014 on child porn charges
However, investigators did find that Bavarella allegedly encouraged the sender to continue to send illegal images and he did not object to the material.
Lutts is currently facing federal charges stemming from the abuse in San Diego. A grand jury indictment filed on Sept. 26 alleges Lutts may have also abused another child in the same manner – an 11-month-old girl.
Lutts was the baby boy’s foster parent. He brought the child home on Aug. 4.