FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT
AUSA VICKIE E. LEDUC or
MARCIA MURPHY at 410-209-4885
SEPTEMBER 12, 2007
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
WESTERN MARYLAND MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO THE SEXUAL EXPLOITATION
OF MINOR GIRLS TO PRODUCE CHILD PORNOGRAPHY
Baltimore, Maryland - William Edward Wray, II, age 50, of Crespatown, Maryland, pleaded guilty today to two counts of sexually exploiting a minor to produce child pornography, announced United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein.
According to the court documents and the guilty plea, on January 27, 2007, Wray sexually exploited a minor female to produce a photograph of the minor female engaged in sexually explicit conduct. Between November 2002 and November 2004, Wray sexually exploited another minor female, in order to produce videos of her engaged in sexually explicit conduct.
"Photographs of children engaged in sexual activity are evidence of a crime, and anyone who takes them or possesses them is subject to federal criminal prosecution," stated U.S. Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein.
According to court documents, law enforcement officers searched Wray’s residence on March 9, 2007 and seized numerous hard drives, several hundred pieces of removable media, a digital video camera, several Polaroid images of child pornography and two videotapes of Wray engaging in sexually explicit behavior with minor children, including the two victims. When officers entered Wray’s residence, his computer was operating on a file sharing program, distributing his collection of child pornography to other individuals through the Internet. Wray distributed, received or possessed over 600 images of child pornography, including sadistic or masochistic violence involving prepubescent minors.
Wray faces a minimum mandatory sentence of 15 years and a maximum sentence of 30 years in prison for the first count, and a minimum mandatory sentence of 10 years and a maximum of 20 years in prison for the second count of sexual exploitation of a minor to produce child pornography. A change in the law after July 27, 2006, accounts for the different maximum sentences on each count. U.S. District Judge Richard D. Bennett has scheduled sentencing for December 7, 2007 at 10:00 a.m.
This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood. In February 2006, Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales launched Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative designed to protect children from online exploitation and abuse. Led by the United States 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/.
United States Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein praised the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, the U.S. Postal Inspection Service and the Combined County Criminal Investigation Unit located in Allegany County, Maryland for their investigative work. Mr. Rosenstein commended Allegany County State’s Attorney Michael Twigg for the cooperation provided by his office. Mr. Rosenstein thanked Assistant U.S. Attorney Bonnie S. Greenberg, who is prosecuting the case.