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Peoria Man Charged with Transportation of Child Pornography

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 30, 2011

Peoria, Ill. – A federal grand jury yesterday returned an indictment charging Shawn M. Siegel, 33, of Peoria, Ill., with transportation of child pornography and obstruction of justice. The indictment alleges that from January 2010 to June 2010, Siegel transported a computer disk that contained images of child pornography from California to Illinois. Further, the indictment alleges that on Sept. 9, 2011, Siegel altered a computer hard drive.

Siegel, of the 1100 block of Mechanic Street, was arrested on Sept. 12, 2011, and charged in a federal criminal complaint. During a court appearance before U.S. Magistrate Judge John A. Gorman in Peoria, Siegel waived a detention hearing and was ordered to remain detained in U.S. Marshals Service custody. Arraignment on the charges as filed in the indictment is scheduled on Oct. 7.

The charges were investigated by the U.S. Secret Service and the Pekin Police Department. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Kirk D. Schoenbein.

If convicted, the statutory penalty for transportation of child pornography is a mandatory minimum five years to 20 years in prison and a term of supervised release of up to life following any term of imprisonment. For obstruction of justice, the maximum statutory penalty is up to 20 years in prison.

Members of the public are reminded that an indictment is merely an accusation; the defendant is presumed innocent unless proven guilty.

The 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 U.S. 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.

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