News and Press Releases

Van Wert man indicted on child pornography charges

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Sept. 19, 2012

A federal grand jury in Cleveland returned a five-count indictment charging Philip S. Butler, age 34, of Van Wert, Ohio, with producing, distributing and possessing child pornography, said Steven M. Dettelbach, United States Attorney for the Northern District of Ohio.

The indictment charges on or about May 10, 2009, Butler used, persuaded, induced, enticed and coerced a minor to engage in sexually explicit conduct for the purpose of transmitting a live visual depiction of such conduct; and knowing and having reason to know that such visual depiction would be transmitted, using any means or facility of interstate and foreign commerce, and in and affecting interstate and foreign commerce.

The indictment further charges from on or about July 25, 2010 through July 28, 2010, Butler used, persuaded, induced, enticed and coerced a different minor to engage in sexually explicit conduct for the purpose of transmitting a live visual depiction of such conduct; and knowing and having reason to know that such visual depiction would be transmitted, using any means or facility of interstate and foreign commerce, and in and affecting interstate and foreign commerce.

The indictment further charges on or about August 7, 2010, Butler attempted to coerce a third minor to engage in sexually explicit conduct for the purpose of transmitting a live visual depiction of such conduct; and knowing and having reason to know that such visual depiction would be transmitted, using any means or facility of interstate and foreign commerce, and in and affecting interstate and foreign commerce.

The indictment further charges from on or about August 5, 2010, through on or about August 21, 2010, Butler knowingly distributed computer files, which files contained visual depictions of real minors engaged in sexually explicit conduct. Additionally, the indictment charges that on August 30, 2010, Butler possessed a computer and two external hard drives, all containing child pornography.

If convicted, the defendant’s sentence will be determined by the court after review of factors unique to this case, including the defendant’s prior criminal record, if any, the defendant’s role in the offense and the characteristics of the violation. In all cases the sentence will not exceed the statutory maximum and in most cases it will be less than the maximum.

This case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Michael A. Sullivan.

The case was investigated by the Department of Homeland Security, Homeland Security Investigations.
An indictment is only a charge and is not evidence of guilt. A defendant is entitled to a fair trial in which it will be the government’s burden to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

 

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