MIAMI BEACH RESIDENT AND REGISTERED SEX OFFENDER SENTENCED TO 10 YEARS IMPRISONMENT AND LIFETIME SUPERVISED RELEASE
Wifredo A. Ferrer, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, and Michael K. Fithen, Special Agent in Charge, U.S. Secret Service, Miami Division, announced that on May 6, 2010, a federal judge in Miami sentenced defendant Barry K. Whaley, a resident of Miami Beach, Florida and registered sex offender, to 10 years imprisonment, followed by a lifetime of supervised release, on his conviction for possession of child pornography, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 2252(a)(4)(B).
According to court documents, in 1993, Whaley was convicted in Alaska for sexual abuse of a minor and sentenced to a prison term. On his release from prison, Whaley was required to register as a sex offender in his state of residence. Whaley moved to Miami Beach and registered as a sex offender with the State of Florida.
According to court documents, Detectives with the Special Victims Unit of the Miami Beach Police Department periodically verify the registered addresses of sex offenders who live in the city. As part of the verification process, detectives conduct unannounced visits at each sex offender’s registered address. On June 26, 2008, Miami Beach police detectives visited the address that Whaley registered as his residence. They discovered that Whaley’s registered apartment had been through a fire and was condemned and uninhabitable. Whaley had not updated his address, as Florida law requires.
According to court documents, Miami Beach police detectives tracked down Whaley and had him report to the police station. They arrested him for failure to update his sex offender registration and lying to an investigator. On the day of his arrest on the state charges, detectives discovered that Whaley possessed a laptop computer that contained videos and still images of child pornography. A federal grand jury in the Southern District of Florida indicted Whaley on child pornography possession charges. Because Whaley had a prior conviction for a sex crime involving a minor, he was subject to mandatory increased penalties on the federal possession charges.
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.
Mr. Ferrer commended the investigative efforts of the Special Victims Unit of the Miami Beach Police Department, the U.S. Secret Service, who worked with the Miami Beach Police Department in investigating the case and examining the defendant’s computer, and the Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force (ICAC). The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Marlene Rodriguez.
A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the United States Attorney's Office for the Southern District of Florida at http://www.usdoj.gov/usao/fls. Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Southern District of Florida at http://www.flsd.uscourts.gov or on http://pacer.flsd.uscourts.gov.