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Trial begins for man accused of videotaping sex acts with children

Christopher Sena leveled sexual torture on his own children and other family members for a decade, prosecutors said during opening statements of his trial on Friday.

In a trial expected to last more than a month, Chief Deputy District Attorney James Sweetin detailed the abuse from “how it started and progressed” to the day Sena was arrested.

The prosecutor used what he said were Sena’s own words to describe the sexual assault of one child.

“If you love me, you would let me do it,” he told her, according to the prosecutor.

The 52-year-old Sena faces charges including multiple counts of sexual assault with a minor, incest, use of a minor in the production of pornography, lewdness with a child younger than 14, and child abuse. If convicted, he faces life in prison.

After Las Vegas police learned of the abuse allegations in late 2014, a SWAT team served a warrant at the family’s trailer south of Nellis Air Force Base. Authorities later learned that Sena videotaped sexual abuse of the children, along with sexual encounters with a family dog. His then-wife, Deborah Sena, and ex-wife, Terrie Sena, also were charged and have been sent to prison.

Christopher Sena faces 120 charges related to seven alleged child victims, according to the prosecutor, who said the abuse occurred with “great regularity.”

Deputy Public Defender David Lopez-Negrete, meanwhile, urged jurors to “check the tape,” rather than rely on “subjective” testimony from Sena’s former wives.

“If you do, then you will see what did happen and what did not happen in this case,” Lopez-Negrete said. “The tapes speak for themselves and they will show you what truly and horribly happened.”

As part of their deals with prosecutors, Sena’s former wives agreed to testify against him at trial.

In a 2015 correspondence with the Review-Journal, one of Sena’s accusers, now an adult, said he had video cameras set up around their home in the 6000 block of Yellowstone Avenue, watching them at all hours.

Initially, Deborah Sena, a woman and a child told a family law attorney about the abuse. That attorney contacted police, who seized recording equipment from the home.

In a voluntary statement to police, Deborah Sena wrote that “Chris made me have sex” with one of the children.

Prosecutors are expected to start calling witnesses on Monday.

Contact David Ferrara at dferrara@reviewjournal.com or 702-380-1039. Follow @randompoker on Twitter.

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