ILLINOIS MAN CHARGED WITH SEXUAL EXPLOITATION OF MINOR
SPRINGFIELD, Mass. - A Montrose, Illinois man was charged in federal court on 18 counts of child exploitation related charges.
JAMES WADDELL, 33, was charged in an indictment with 16 counts of sexual exploitation of a child, one count of inducing travel to engage in illegal sexual activity, and one count of online enticement. The indictment was unsealed after Waddell’s arrest on Tuesday.
The indictment alleges that during 2009 and 2010, Waddell induced a female under the age of 18 to engage in sexually explicit conduct for the purpose of producing child pornography. It is also alleged that Waddell used a facility of interstate commerce to induce the minor, who was 15 years old at the time, to have sex with him. The indictment alleges that Waddell induced the minor to travel from Massachusetts to Connecticut so that he could have sex with her.
Waddell had his initial appearance on Tuesday in federal court in the Southern District of Illinois. If convicted on the charges, Waddell faces up to life in federal prison to be followed by a lifetime of supervised release.
United States Attorney Carmen M. Ortiz; Bruce M. Foucart, Special Agent in Charge of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Office of Homeland Security Investigations in Boston; Longmeadow Police Chief Robert Siano; Richard DesLauriers, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Boston Field Division; and Colonel Marian McGovern, Superintendent of the Massachusetts State Police, made the announcement today. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Alex J. Grant of Ortiz's Springfield Branch Unit.
This case is being brought as part of Project Safe Childhood. In 2006, the Department of Justice created Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative designed to protect children from online exploitation and abuse. Led by the U.S. Attorneys' Offices, 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 identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.projectsafechildhood.gov/.
The details contained in the indictment are allegations. The defendant is presumed to be innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.