News and Press Releases

“PREDATORMIKE1203” Sentenced to 164 Months in Prison for Child Exploitation Offenses

July 1, 2011

Mark Allen Heil, age 42, of Bel Air, Maryland, was sentenced late yesterday to 164 months in prison for attempted enticement of a minor and possession of child pornography, in violation of federal law. Heil also was sentenced to 10 years of supervised release, which will commence following his prison term. He also will be required to register as a sex offender in any jurisdiction in which he lives, works or attends school.

According to statements made at today’s hearing and documents filed in court, Mark Allen Heil came to the attention of the Delaware Child Predator Task Force in July 2010, when he contacted an undercover Delaware State Police detective in an internet chat room devoted to sexual activity with young boys. The undercover detective was posing as the father of a nine-year-old boy available for sex with adult males. Between July and October 2010, Heil and the undercover detective engaged in online chats about Heil’s interest in engaging in sex acts with young boys. Heil arranged to meet the detective at Don Pablo’s Restaurant, in Newark, Delaware, on October 17, 2010 to watch football and to negotiate the terms of Heil’s sexual encounter with the fictional nine-year-old boy. Heil was arrested outside of the restaurant following the meeting, and his vehicle was searched.

Law enforcement agents recovered a laptop computer from Heil’s vehicle that contained over 9,000 still images and 100 movies of child pornography. Most of these pictures and movies featured young boys engaged in sexual acts with adult males. The laptop also contained over 500 transcripts of chats between Heil and other child sex offenders in the 3 months preceding Heil’s arrest. Using the screen name “predatormike1203” during these chats, Heil exchanged images of child pornography with other child sex offenders and discussed their shared interest in engaging in sex with young boys. Some of Heil’s chat partners purported to be adults with custody of children whom they were molesting.

Following the sentencing hearing, Charles M. Oberly, III, United States Attorney for the District of Delaware, stated: “Like many people, child sex offenders have formed their own social networks online. They use those networks to trade child pornography and to discuss their shared perverted interest in children, in the process validating each other’s aberrant behavior, perpetuating the exploitation of the children depicted in the images that they share, and encouraging the sexual abuse of future child victims. When his online world no longer met his needs, Mr. Heil chose to pursue his predatory desires by attempting to molest a 9-year-old boy with the help of a person whom Mr. Heil believed to be a father who shared his criminal interest in children. Unfortunately, Mr. Heil is not the first child predator this office has successfully prosecuted and will not be the last. For those predators we have not yet caught, we are coming after you and when you are caught, you’ll be put away for as long as possible. Destroying a child’s innocence, or even attempting to do so, calls for the most serious of consequences.”

“With today’s sentencing, there is one less predator out there in our community and our children are much safer as a result,” said John P. Kelleghan, special agent in charge of ICE HSI in Philadelphia. “HSI will use all of its investigative resources to bring child predators to justice for their despicable crimes.”

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