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NEWS RELEASE

OFFICE OF THE UNITED STATES ATTORNEY

WESTERN DISTRICT OF MISSOURI


BETH PHILLIPS


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

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


JANUARY 6, 2010

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE


PROJECT SAFE CHILDHOOD


KC MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO ATTEMPTING

TO RECEIVE CHILD PORN


            KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Beth Phillips, United States Attorney for the Western District of Missouri, announced that a Kansas City, Mo., man pleaded guilty in federal court today to attempting to receive child pornography over the Internet.


            Marshall A. Blue, 24, of Kansas City, pleaded guilty before U.S. Chief District Judge Fernando J. Gaitan to the charge contained in a Feb. 9, 2010, indictment.


            By pleading guilty today, Blue admitted that he attempted to receive child pornography over the Internet between May 13, 2008, and Feb. 12, 2009.


            In the course of an undercover investigation, officers with the Independence, Mo., Police Department identified a computer listing child pornography files as available for sharing over a peer-to-peer file-sharing network. When task force officers executed a search warrant at Blue’s residence, he admitted that he used his grandparents’ computer to search for movies of child pornography on the Internet. Blue told investigators that he only searched for videos, not photos, and that he had downloaded from 10 to 25 child pornography movies over the past four years. Some of the files that were downloaded to Blue’s computer were also available to share with others over the Internet.


            Several movies of child pornography were found on Blue’s computer, including depictions of prepubescents and depictions of sadistic or violent content.


            Under federal statutes, Blue is subject to a mandatory minimum sentence of five years in federal prison without parole, up to a sentence of 20 years in federal prison without parole, plus a fine up to $250,000. Under the terms of today’s plea agreement, Blue agreed to pay $5,000 in restitution to a known victim whose sexual abuse is portrayed in at least one of the movies, or $3,000 if he pays within 30 days of the sentencing date. A sentencing hearing will be scheduled after the completion of a presentence investigation by the United States Probation Office.


            This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Katharine Fincham. It was investigated by the Independence, Mo., Police Department and the FBI CyberCrimes Task Force.


Project Safe Childhood

            This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice. Led by United States Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section (CEOS), 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 to 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

http://www.justice.gov/usao/mow/index.html