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Aug. 30, 2011

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Galveston Man Charged With Receipt and Possession of Child Pornography

GALVESTON, Texas –  A two-count sealed indictment charging Phillip Edward Baker, 48, with possession and receipt of child pornography has been unsealed following his arrest today by Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) special agents, United States Attorney José Angel Moreno announced today.

A federal grand jury in Houston returned a two-count indictment on Aug. 17, 2011, charging Baker with one count of receiving child pornography and one count of possessing child pornography. Baker was taken into custody by HSI special agents today following his surrender in Galveston and is expected to make his initial appearance before U.S. Magistrate Judge Froeschner Wednesday morning when the issue of bond is expected to be decided.

Baker is accused of receiving images containing child pornography via the Internet through a peer to peer network and possessing and retaining the images on a home computer and other storage devices in February 2010.  

Baker faces a sentence of no less than five years and a maximum of 20 years imprisonment if convicted of receiving child pornography, while the possession of child pornography charge carries a maximum punishment of up to 10 years imprisonment. Both charges are also punishable by maximum fines of $250,000 upon conviction. Additionally, each offense carries a maximum life term of supervised release during which the court can impose a number of special conditions designed to protect children. A conviction for either of the counts charged mandates registration as a sex offender.

The investigation leading to the indictment was conducted by HSI as part of Operation Predator. The prosecution is 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

Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Demetrius Bivins is prosecuting the case.