fort richardson man sentenced to six years in federal prison for possessing child pornography
Anchorage Alaska – United States Attorney Karen L. Loeffler announced today that a Fort Richardson man was sentenced in federal court in Anchorage to 72 months in prison for possessing child pornography.
Vincent Lee Evans, 30, a resident of Fort Richardson, Alaska, was sentenced on April 27, 2011, by United States District Judge John W. Sedwick. The Court also ordered that Evans be placed on supervised release for 10 years.
According to information presented to the court by Assistant United States Attorney Kyle G. French, Evans stated that he began looking at child pornography in 2004. Based on a referral from the German state police of Baden-Württemberg involving Evans’ peer-to-peer Internet activities, agents from the Department of Homeland Security interviewed Evans in October 2009. Evans admitted to the agents that he knowingly possessed child pornography and stored the materials on an external hard drive.
Forensic examination of the external hard drive and other electronic storage devices revealed hundreds of images and videos depicting children being sexually abused. When law enforcement subsequently contacted Evans in September 2010, regarding the materials discovered by the forensic examiner, Evans admitted to collecting and storing more child pornography on a recently purchased computer and external storage device.
Many of the materials collected and stored by Evans depict prepubescent children, including videos of toddlers being raped. At sentencing, Mr. French noted that a toddler’s physical and cognitive limitations render the child especially vulnerable to sexual abuse and asked the court to hold Evans accountable for collecting and possessing the toddler depictions. Citing an August 2010, report to Congress that law enforcement is seeing more violent as well as more prepubescent children and infant victims in child pornography, French also emphasized the need to impose a sentence that helps deter other child pornography collectors from driving the demand for the creation and dissemination of materials depicting toddlers being sexually abused.
When sentencing Evans, Judge Sedwick stated that possessing child pornography is a very serious crime and the consequences are substantial. Evans’ sentence includes a ten-year term of supervised release, during which Evans is required to participate in sex offender treatment, and restrict his use of computers and contact with children under 18 years of age.
“Children whose sexual abuse is captured in images and videos suffer not just from the abuse graphically memorialized in the images, but also from a separate victimization, knowing that the images of that abuse are accessible, usually on the Internet, and are traded by other offenders who receive sexual gratification from the children’s distress,” noted Ms. Loeffler.
Ms. Loeffler commended Homeland Security Investigations for their investigation leading to the successful prosecution of Evans and noted the assistance provided by the German state police of Baden-Württemberg. “People who victimize children by creating, distributing, possessing, or viewing videos and images of children being sexually abused often use the Internet. Their criminal conduct impacts children around the world and international law enforcement cooperation is a critical tool to address this activity which includes identifying and locating victims. While Mr. Evans may have felt safe collecting and consuming child sex abuse depictions from his residence located far from Germany in Alaska, he and his criminal activities were not beyond the detection, identification, and reach of law enforcement.”
This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice. Led by United States Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section (CEOS), Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources to better locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who exploit children via the Internet, as well as to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.projectsafechildhood.gov.