Department of Justice
Office of Public Affairs
EAST TEXAS FEDS DEDICATED TO PROTECTING CHILDREN FROM SEXUAL EXPLOITATION
BEAUMONT – Eastern district of Texas U.S. Attorney John M. Bales reminds parents, educators and community leaders to be ever mindful of the presence of child sexual predators on the internet.
"School is out and children are spending more time on the internet," said U.S. Attorney Bales. "Now is the time to protect our children from sexual predators, before they are victimized."
Parents can be assured that law enforcement officers and prosecutors in the Eastern District of Texas are continuing in their quest to eradicate the sexual exploitation of children. The Department of Justice launched Project Safe Childhood (PSC) in 2006, an initiative targeting the proliferation of technology-facilitated sexual exploitation crimes against children. Led by U.S. Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, PSC marshals federal, state, tribal and local resources to better locate, apprehend and prosecute individuals who exploit children via the Internet, as well as to identify and rescue victims.
The strategy first analyzed the threat to our nation’s children and described the current efforts at all levels of the government against this threat. These cases include prosecutions of online enticement of children to engage in sexual activity, interstate transportation of children to engage in sexual activity, production, distribution and possession of child pornography, and other offenses. In the Eastern District of Texas, some of those cases include:
- Paul Gove, a 28 year-old Plano man, pleaded guilty to possession of child pornography on Apr. 22, 2010. He admitted that he possessed in excess of 600 images of child pornography, including images that depicted prepubescent children and images that depicted sadistic and masochistic conduct. Gove had been previously employed as a hockey referee for youth divisions at the Dr. Pepper Star’s Center in Frisco, Texas. Gove was sentenced to 10 years in federal prison on Apr. 25, 2011.
- Albert Slatter, Jr., a 59-year-old assistant band director for the Longview ISD, was sentenced to federal prison on Apr. 29, 2010, for possessing images of child pornography on his home computer.
- Richard Missler, a 54-year-old Carrollton, Texas high school teacher, used peer-to-peer software to trade images of child pornography with other predators on the internet. Missler pleaded guilty to child pornography charges and was sentenced to over 17 years in federal prison on Apr. 25, 2011.
- Patrick Sanders, the 52-year-old Director of the Boys and Girls Club in Lufkin, pleaded guilty on Apr. 22, 2010, to possessing child pornography on his computer at the Boys and Girls Club office. Sanders was sentenced to 54 months in federal prison.
- Philip Baker, a 54-year-old former middle school assistant principal from Denton, Texas, was named in an eight-count indictment for advertising child pornography on the internet and for transporting and receiving child pornography. Baker pleaded guilty in January 2011 and faces up to 30 years in federal prison.
For more information on efforts to combat child exploitation in the Eastern District of Texas, please see the attached PDF summary: http://www.justice.gov/usao/txe/downloads/PSC_child_exploitation_061511.pdf.
“A fair test of the morality of any society is how that society protects its children," said U.S. Attorney Bales. “Child pornography, child exploitation, child sex tourism are present cancers in our body politic and they are a direct threat to our children. We will not rest while our children are at risk."
For more information regarding the National Strategy to Combat Child Exploitation, Prevention and Interdiction, please visit: www.projectsafechildhood.gov/docs/natstrategyreport.pdf.