June 8, 2010
HOUSTON MAN CHARGED WITH POSSESSING CHILD PORNOGRAPHY ORDERED HELD WITHOUT BOND PENDING TRIAL
(HOUSTON) – Following a detention hearing today, Marvin Oscar Hunick, 51, a Houston resident, was ordered held in federal custody without bond pending trial on charges that he possessed child pornography obtained via the Internet, United States Attorney José Angel Moreno announced today.
A Houston grand jury returned a one-count indictment charging Hunick with possession of child pornography on May 26, 2010. Hunick was arrested on June 3, 2010, by special agents of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and remained in custody pending today’s hearing. Following today’s hearing, U.S. Magistrate Judge Frances Stacy granted the government’s motion to detain him, finding the government presented sufficient evidence Hunick posed a danger to the community. Hunick has pleaded not guilty to the charges. Trial is set for Aug. 9, 2010, before U.S. District Judge Melinda Harmon.
Testimony during today’s hearing showed that the ICE Cybercrimes Center identified a commercial child pornography website and that an undercover agent accessed the website and paid to join the website. As a result of information gathered by the undercover agent, ICE agents executed a federal search warrant on the server and recovered computer log files which identified the paid subscribers to the commercial child pornography site. One of the alleged subscribers, according to testimony, was identified as Marvin Oscar Hunick, of Houston.
On Nov. 19, 2009, Houston ICE agents executed a federal search warrant at Hunrick’s residence and found printed child pornography images in a binder and seized three computers. According to testimony in open court, a forensic exam of the three computers seized from Hunrick’s residence resulted in the discovery thousands of images and thousands more videos containing child pornography
Possession of child pornography carries a maximum sentence of 10 years imprisonment and a $250,000 file to be followed by a maximum life term of supervised release during which the court can impose a number of special conditions designed to protect children and prohibit the use of the Internet.
This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice. Led by United States Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, 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 case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Robert Stabe.
An indictment is a formal accusation of criminal conduct, not evidence.
A defendant is presumed innocent unless and until convicted by due process of law.
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