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GRAND RAPIDS, MICHIGAN MAN SENTENCED TO 30 YEARS FOR CHILD PORNOGRAPHY

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 16, 2012

GRAND RAPIDS, MICHIGAN – U.S. Attorney Donald A. Davis announced today that Michael Melchor, 37, of Grand Rapids, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Gordon J. Quist on March 15, 2012, to thirty years’ imprisonment for receipt of child pornography. Melchor was previously convicted in 2001 for transporting a minor across state lines for the purpose of engaging in criminal sexual conduct and in 2007 for aggravated indecent exposure. He pled guilty to the receipt charge on November 29, 2011. Upon completion of his sentence, he will be placed on lifetime supervised release.

Melchor came to the attention of Grand Rapids law enforcement authorities in August of 2011 when they received information from their counterparts in Oregon alleging that Melchor had been inappropriately communicating with an eleven-year-old girl via the Internet and cellular phones. During the investigation of that activity, the Grand Rapids Police Department obtained a search warrant for the seizure of Melchor’s computer and digital equipment, the examination of which resulted in the discovery of evidence of the receipt of child pornography and a collection of approximately 3,800 such images.

The case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative designed to protect children from online exploitation and abuse. The U.S. Attorney’s Office, County Prosecutor’s Offices, Internet Crimes Against Children task force (ICAC), federal, state, and local law enforcement are working closely together to locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who exploit children. The partners in Project Safe Childhood work to educate local communities about the dangers of online child exploitation, and to teach children how to protect themselves. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit the following web site: project safechild hood.

Brian M. Moskowitz, special agent in charge of Homeland Security Investigations for Michigan and Ohio, stated: “HSI special agents are committed to helping our law enforcement partners across the country protect the children of their communities. Lengthy prison sentences for sexual predators like Melchor will hopefully make others like him think twice before they act.”

The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Julie Woods and investigated by the Grand Rapids Police Department and the Grand Rapids Office of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Homeland Security Investigations.

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