Eric Franklin Rosser, onetime keyboardist for John Mellencamp's backing band, was added to the Federal Bureau of Investigation's "Ten Most Wanted Fugitives" list Wednesday (December 27) for his alleged involvement in the production and distribution of child pornography.
Rosser, who the FBI claims was last seen in Thailand, where he operated a Bangkok music school for children, was indicted March 21 by a federal grand jury in the Southern District of Indiana on charges of production, distribution, receipt and transportation of child pornography, as well as conspiracy to transport, ship, distribute and receive child pornography.
The charges center on a videotape the 48-year-old Rosser allegedly made in Thailand, which portrays sexually explicit conduct between himself and an 11-year-old girl. He then allegedly shipped the tape to a Bloomington, Indiana resident.
The Royal Thai Police, with the assistance of the FBI, on February 9 arrested Rosser, who later was released on bail. His failure to appear at his appointed April 18 court date and subsequent dates laid grounds for his fugitive status. Rosser may have fled Thailand and could resurface in the U.S., England, the Netherlands, Japan, the Philippines, or Indonesia, the FBI suggested. Rosser should be considered dangerous, especially to children, according to an FBI press release.
Rosser played piano on Mellencamp's 1980 album, Nothin' Matters and What If It Did. He hasn't worked with the heartland rocker since. He's credited in the album's liner notes as Doc Rosser.
"Eric Franklin Rosser played in my band in 1979 for a very brief period of time," Mellencamp wrote in a statement faxed to the Reuters wire service. "I have not seen or spoken to him since." Spokespersons at Columbia Records, the label that released Mellencamp's latest album, 1998's John Mellencamp, were unavailable for comment.
A reward of up to $50,000 is being offered for any information leading directly to Rosser's arrest. If caught and found guilty, he faces up to 15 years and fines up to $250,000 for each of the four counts of the indictment alleging conspiracy, transportation and distribution of child pornography.