Mercer County Man Indicted on Child Exploitation Charges
PITTSBURGH, Pa. - A resident of Mercer County, Pa., has been indicted by a federal grand jury in Pittsburgh on charges of production of material depicting the sexual exploitation of a minor and possession of material depicting the sexual exploitation of a minor, United States Attorney David J. Hickton announced today.
The seven-count superseding indictment named Earl D. Warner, 54, as the sole defendant.
According to the superseding indictment, on or about June 4, 2011, June 8, 2011, June 12, 2011, June 13, 2011, July 13, 2011, and July 23, 2011, in the Western District of Pennsylvania, Warner employed, used, persuaded, induced, enticed, and coerced one of three child victims to engage in sexually explicit conduct for the purpose of producing visual depictions, namely digital photographs and videos, of such conduct. The superseding indictment also charges that on or about April 9, 2012, Warner possessed visual depictions, namely, images and videos in computer graphics files, the production of which involved the use of minors engaging in sexually explicit conduct.
The law provides for a maximum total sentence of life imprisonment, a fine of $1,750,000, or both. Under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, the actual sentence imposed would be based upon the seriousness of the offense and the prior criminal history, if any, of the defendant.
Assistant United States Attorney Carolyn J. Bloch is prosecuting this case on behalf of the government.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Pennsylvania State Police, and the Mercer County District Attorney's Office conducted the investigation leading to the superseding indictment in this case.
A superseding indictment is an accusation. A defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.
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 Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.justice.gov/psc.
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