Old Forge Man Charged with Online Enticement
Peter J. Smith, United States Attorney for the Middle District of Pennsylvania, announced that an Old Forge man was charged Wednesday with the crime of online enticement.
Jeffrey Pettinato, age 51, was charged by way of a felony Information for allegedly committing the offenses at various times between July 2012 through August 2012. The Information alleges that Pettinato used a computer and attempted to persuade, induce, entice, and coerce a minor to engage in sexual activity.
Pettinato faces a minimum of 10 years in prison and a maximum of up to life, a fine in the amount of $250,000, as well as sexual offender registration requirements pursuant to the Adam Walsh Act.
Smith noted that this case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by the United States Attorneys' Offices and the Criminal Division's Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources to locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who sexually exploit children, and to identify and rescue victims. For more information about internet safety education, please visit www.usdoj.gov/psc and click on the tab "resources."
Prosecution is assigned to Assistant United States Attorney Michelle Olshefski.
An Indictment or Information is not evidence of guilt but simply a description of the charge made by the Grand Jury and/or United States Attorney against a defendant. A charged Defendant is presumed innocent until a jury returns a unanimous finding that the United States has proven the defendant’s guilt beyond a reasonable doubt or until the defendant has pleaded guilty to the charges.
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