East Alton Man Pleads Guilty to Child Pornography Offenses
An East Alton man pled guilty in federal district court in East St. Louis, on January 27, 2012, to a two-count indictment charging him with Receipt of Child Pornography (Count 1) and Possession of Child Pornography (Count 2), the United States Attorney for the Southern District of Illinois, Stephen R. Wigginton, announced today.
Brandon Charles Seymour, 30, of East Alton, IL, faces a term of imprisonment of not less than five (5) years but not more than 20 years, a fine up to $250,000, and a term of supervised release of not less than five (5) years to life for Receipt of Child Pornography; and a term of imprisonment of not more than ten (10) years, a fine up to $250,000, and a term of supervised release of not less than five (5) years to life for Possession of Child Pornography when he is sentenced. Sentencing is scheduled for May 18, 2012. Seymour was taken into custody pending sentencing.
Facts surrounding the case, as related in court, are that on April 27, 2011, an agent with the Illinois Attorney General’s Office was working an undercover internet operation when he identified a computer, later found to belong to Seymour, offering to share child pornography. The officer was able to download 23 videos of child pornography from Seymour’s computer. The investigation led the officer to the home Seymour shared with his family in East Alton. A search warrant was obtained and executed on June 8, 2011. Among the items seized from the home was an eMachines computer and a Maxell DVD-R. Both were found in Seymour’s bedroom.
In a voluntary statement, Seymour admitted possession of the eMachines computer, stating that he was the only one who used that computer. He said that any videos of child pornography found on the computer would have been put there by him. He estimated that he had approximately 50 video files containing child pornography on this computer. Seymour also admitted burning approximately 15 video files containing child pornography to the Maxell DVD-R.
A forensic review of the computer revealed over 1,000 videos of child pornography, including the 23 that had been downloaded by the undercover officer on April 27, 2011(Count 2). Several of the videos found on the computer, including the one charged in Count 1 of the Indictment, was downloaded via the internet on April 20, 2011 (Count 1). The Maxell DVD-R contained 29 videos depicting minors engaging in sexually explicit behavior.
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.
The case was investigated by the Illinois Attorney General’s Office, while the Madison County State’s Attorney’s Office assisted in bringing the case for federal prosecution. The case is assigned to Assistant United States Attorney Angela Scott.