DALLAS MAN, WITH MORE THAN 1,800 IMAGES AND 150 VIDEOS OF CHILD PORNOGRAPHY, PLEADS GUILTY IN FEDERAL COURT
DALLAS — Matthew Rodriguez, 21, pleaded guilty this morning before Chief U.S. District Judge Sidney A. Fitzwater to one count of transporting and shipping child pornography, announced U.S. Attorney Sarah R. Saldaña of the Northern District of Texas. Rodriguez, who has been in custody since his arrest in November 2011, faces a statutory sentence of not less than five nor more than 20 years in prison, up to a $250,000 fine and up to a lifetime of supervised release. Sentencing is set for May 4, 2012, before Judge Fitzwater.
According to documents filed in the case, Rodriguez admitted using the Internet and file-sharing software to transmit and share images of child pornography. When FBI agents executed a search warrant at his residence in Dallas in March 2011, they seized his laptop computer. A forensic analysis of that computer located approximately 1,800 images and 150 videos of minors engaged in sexually explicit conduct. Rodriguez further admitted that some of the images and videos included images of prepubescent minors and material that depicted sadistic images of prepubescent minors.
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 U.S. 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.
The investigation is being conducted by the FBI and the Plano, Texas Police Department. Assistant U.S. Attorney Camille Sparks is in charge of the prosecution.
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