Ex-teacher pleads guilty to sexual assault of student

Mar. 26—A former Oahu public school teacher serving nearly 17-1 /2 years in federal prison for producing child pornography entered a plea of guilty to state charges that he sexually assaulted a student.

A former Oahu public school teacher serving nearly 17-1 /2 years in federal prison for producing child pornography entered a plea of guilty to state charges that he sexually assaulted a student.

Alden M. Bunag, 35, agreed to plead guilty to one count of continuous sexual assault of a minor under the age of 14, one count of promoting child abuse in the second degree, and one count of promoting child abuse in the third degree.

Bunag signed the plea agreement Saturday, and it was filed in Oahu Circuit Court on Monday.

At sentencing Bunag will face up to life in prison with the possibility of parole on the charge of sexual assault of a minor under the age of 14 ; 20 years for promoting child abuse in the second degree ; and 10 years for promoting child abuse in the third degree.

The Department of the Prosecuting Attorney declined comment until Bunag is sentenced.

"Mr. Bunag has always wanted to accept responsibility for his actions and has now done so in both state and federal court. He is extremely remorseful and hopes his change of plea will allow continued healing for the complainant and all those impacted by his conduct, " Bunag's attorney, First Deputy Public Defender Hayley Y.C. Cheng, told the Hono ­lulu Star-Advertiser.

Bunag was indicted Sept. 30, 2022, in state court.

He entered into a plea agreement with the U.S. Department of Justice on May 19.

In exchange for his guilty plea, federal prosecutors agreed not to pursue charges related to material found on his electronic devices that were seized by federal agents.

Bunag worked from 2016 to 2017 as a part-time temporary teacher at Ilima Intermediate School.

He had been a substitute teacher since 2017 in the Leeward District and had worked in various positions since 2012.

Bunag was most recently a part-time teacher at Pearl City High School, where he had held a permanent secondary teaching position from 2020 to 2021.

Bunag was charged June 15, 2022, in federal court with distribution of child pornography but was not charged with sexual assault since that is not the U.S. Department of Justice's jurisdiction.

The federal criminal information alleges Bunag, in online chats with a Philadelphia teacher, said he had sex with a 13-year-old former student during lunch breaks at school.

Bunag also said he used camera equipment to record multiple "sexual encounters " with the boy.

The state indictment charges him with three counts of continuous sexual assault of a minor under the age of 14 for allegedly engaging in three or more sexual acts from Aug. 1, 2016, to Sept. 27, 2017.

After Bunag is done serving 17-1 /2 years in federal prison, he will be on federal probation for the next 15 years, Senior U.S. District Judge Susan Oki Mollway ordered.

Bunag must also pay $30, 000 in restitution, $5, 100 in special assessments and a production of child pornography conviction assessment of $50, 000 in the federal case.

Correction : An earlier version of this story incorrectly listed Bunag's federal sentence in the first graph as 17.5 months.