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NEWS RELEASE

OFFICE OF THE UNITED STATES ATTORNEY

WESTERN DISTRICT OF MISSOURI


JOHN F. WOOD


Contact Don Ledford, Public Affairs ● (816) 426-4220 ● 400 East Ninth Street, Room 5510 ● Kansas City, MO 64106

www.usdoj.gov/usao/mow/index.html


JUNE 5, 2008

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE


PROJECT SAFE CHILDHOOD


FORMER MU STUDENT INDICTED FOR OBSCENITY


            JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. – John F. Wood, United States Attorney for the Western District of Missouri, announced that a Columbia, Mo., man was indicted by a federal grand jury today for attempting to transfer obscene material over the Internet to a minor.


            Akshaya Kumar Swain, 29, of Columbia, a citizen of India who was a graduate student and employee at the University of Missouri-Columbia, was charged with attempting to transfer obscene matter to a person he believed to be a 14-year-old girl on Nov. 8, 2007.


            Today’s indictment also contains a forfeiture allegation, which would require Swain to forfeit to the government any property used to commit the alleged offense, including a laptop computer and a tower computer.


            Wood cautioned that the charge contained in this indictment is simply an accusation, and not evidence of guilt. Evidence supporting the charge must be presented to a federal trial jury, whose duty is to determine guilt or innocence.


            This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Lawrence E. Miller. It was investigated by the Boone County, Mo., Sheriff’s Department, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Mid-Missouri Internet Crimes Task Force and the Columbia, Mo., Police Department.


Project Safe Childhood

            This case is being brought as part of 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.


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This news release, as well as additional information about the office of the United States Attorney for the Western District of Missouri, is available on-line at

www.usdoj.gov/usao/mow/index.html