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Jan. 12, 2011

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(CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas) – Donald Earl Marsh, 62, of Corpus Christi, Texas, has been sentenced to prison for possessing child pornography, United States Attorney José Angel Moreno announced today.

At a hearing this afternoon, Senior U.S. District Judge Hayden Head sentenced Marsh to 18 years in federal prison without parole to be followed by a lifetime term of supervised release and a $25,000 fine. In deciding upon the sentence he handed down today, Judge Head considered the need to protect the public and the likelihood that Marsh would re-offend. Judge Head heard evidence of Marsh’s past pattern of sexual exploitation of children, including a prior convictions from Oklahoma in 1990 for forcible sodomy and assault to commit a felony rape, both of which were perpetrated against children. Judge Head found Marsh to present a continuing danger to the public and fashioned a sentence in accordance therewith. Judge Head also ordered Marsh to register as a sex offender for the rest of his life.

Marsh was convicted of the federal felony offense after pleading guilty in October 2010 admitting he had placed images of child pornography on his shared, work-issued laptop on August 19, 2010. Those images were discovered by a co-worker who used the computer after it was last possessed by Marsh. Marsh was contacted by the San Patricio County Sheriff’s Office and admitted to having an interest in child pornography. A subsequent search of Marsh’s home by Immigration and Customs Enforcement-Homeland Security Investigations and the Corpus Christi Police Department in Corpus Christi led to the discovery of other electronic media storage devices which were found to contain 540 images of child pornography consisting of images of minors engaged in sexually explicit conduct. Many of the images and videos depicted victims previously identified as real children by the National Center For Missing and Exploited Children.

Marsh has been in custody since his arrest on Aug. 23, 2010, pursuant to the filing of a federal criminal complaint and will remain in custody pending transfer to a Bureau of Prisons facility where he will serve his sentence to be designated in the near future. 

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

Immigration and Customs Enforcement-Homeland Security Investigations investigated and Assistant U.S. Attorney Lance Duke prosecuted the case.

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