United States Attorney David Capp
Northern District of Indiana
5400 Federal Plaza, Suite 1500
Hammond, IN 46320
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE CONTACT: Mary L. Hatton
October 27, 2010 PHONE: (219) 937-5603
www.usdoj.gov/usao/inn/ Fax: (219) 852-2770
ACTIVITY IN FEDERAL COURT - HAMMOND
Hammond, IN—The United States Attorney's Office announced the following activity in federal court:
James W. Kern, 51, a German citizen and resident of the United Kingdom, was sentenced today by Senior Judge Rudy Lozano to serve 240 months in prison for his plea of guilty to one count of producing child pornography. Kern was extradited from England to the United States for his prosecution. Following his twenty year term of imprisonment, the government will seek Kern’s immediate deportation from the United States.
The charges against Kern stem from his July 2005 visit to the United States, during which time he engaged in illicit sexual conduct and took sexually explicit photographs of a twelve year-old boy from Gary, Indiana. This illegal conduct was discovered in May of 2008, during an investigation into “suspicion of grooming” charges by English law enforcement, stemming from Kern’s interactions with minor boys in the United Kingdom. During their investigation, English law enforcement searched Kern’s home and computer, where they found pictures showing Kern with a minor boy standing outside a house, and pictures of the same minor boy posed lasciviously. The English law enforcement officers noticed that the house in the pictures looked more American than English so they checked Kern’s travel records and found that he had visited the United States in July 2005, and provided a Gary, Indiana address to immigration officials upon his arrival at Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport. Homeland Security Investigations Attaché in London looked up the address Kern provided using Google Earth and confirmed that the house seen via Google matched the house seen in Kern’s photographs of the minor victim.
This case was the result of an investigation by the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement Office of Homeland Security Investigations, the Cambridgeshire Police Constables, the Indiana State Police, and the Lake County Indiana Sheriff’s Department. This case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Jill Trumbull-Harris.