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four soutwest missouri men indicted for child exploitation

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September, 2011

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. - Beth Phillips, United States Attorney for the Western District of Missouri, announced that four southwest Missouri men were indicted by a federal grand jury today in separate and unrelated cases of child exploitation.

USA v. Farris

Jason Farris, 31, of Anderson, Mo., was charged in an indictment returned by a federal grand jury in Springfield.

Today’s indictment alleges that Farris received and distributed child pornography over the Internet between July 17 and Aug. 26, 2011.

This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney James J. Kelleher. It was investigated by the Southwest Missouri Cybercrimes Task Force and the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Office of Homeland Security Investigations.

USA v. Rohe

William Rohe, 54, of Pierce City, Mo., was charged in a two-count indictment returned by a federal grand jury in Springfield, Mo.

Today’s indictment alleges that, between Aug. 2 and 6, 2011, Rohe used the Internet to attempt to induce a minor under the age of 14 to engage in illicit sexual activity. Rohe is also charged with possessing child pornography.

The indictment also contains a forfeiture allegation, which would require Rohe to forfeit to the government any property used to commit the alleged offense, including multiple computers and hard drives.

This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney James J. Kelleher. It was investigated by the Southwest Missouri Cybercrimes Task Force, the Jasper County, Mo., Sheriff’s Department, the Pierce City, Mo., Police Department and the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Office of Homeland Security Investigations.

USA v. Hammond

Adam Hammond, 22, of Climax Springs, Mo., was charged in a three-count superseding indictment returned by a federal grand jury in Springfield.

Today’s superseding indictment replaces an indictment that was returned against Hammond on May 11, 2011, and includes an additional count of producing child pornography. The indictment alleges that Hammond used a minor, identified as “Jane Doe,” to produce child pornography between Oct. 31 and Dec. 29, 2010, in Polk County, Mo.

As in the original indictment, Hammond is charged with using the Internet and a cell phone to induce an individual under the age of 14 to engage in illicit sex, and with receiving and distributing child pornography.

The indictment also contains a forfeiture count, which would require Hammond to forfeit to the government any property used to commit the alleged offense, including a cell phone.

This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney James J. Kelleher. It was investigated by the Southwest Missouri Cybercrimes Task Force, the Polk County, Mo., Sheriff’s Department, the Camden County, Mo., Sheriff’s Department and the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Office of Homeland Security Investigations.

USA v. Ellrick

Lawrence Ellrick, 34, an active duty soldier at Ft. Leonard Wood, was charged in a two-count superseding indictment returned by a federal grand jury in Springfield.

Today’s superseding indictment replaces an indictment that was returned against Ellrick on Feb. 10, 2011, and includes an additional count of using a minor to produce child pornography between Jan. 1 and May 31, 2010, in Texas County, Mo.

As in the original indictment, Ellrick is also charged with possessing child pornography between Jan. 1 and May 31, 2010.

The indictment also contains a forfeiture allegation, which would require Ellrick to forfeit to the government any property used to commit the alleged offenses, including a desktop computer, a laptop computer, a computer hard drive and a digital camera.

This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney James J. Kelleher. It was investigated by the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Office of Homeland Security Investigations and Army CID.

Phillips cautioned that the charges contained in these indictments are simply accusations, and not evidence of guilt. Evidence supporting the charges must be presented to a federal trial jury, whose duty is to determine guilt or innocence.

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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