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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
ANGELA DODGE

Jan. 9, 2012

PUBLIC AFFAIRS OFFICER
(713) 567-9388

Odem Man Admits to Distributing Child Pornography

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas - Fernando Garcia, 40, of Odem, Texas, has pleaded guilty in federal court to distribution of child pornography, United States Attorney Kenneth Magidson announced today. Indicted on Aug. 24, 2011, Garcia was charged with distributing images and videos of minors engaged in sexually explicit conduct on Jan. 27, 2011.

At the time of his guilty plea today, Garcia admitted that on Jan. 27, 2011, an Immigration and Customs Enforcement - Homeland Security Investigations (ICE-HSI) agent was conducting an online undercover investigation into persons distributing child pornography. The agent was able to download several images of child pornography and trace them back to an account belonging to Garcia. A search warrant was executed on Garcia’s home by ICE-HSI agents and members of Corpus Christi Police Department’s Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force.  At that time, Garcia advised the law enforcement officers that they would discover numerous images of child pornography on the computers seized. Several computers were seized and subjected to forensic analysis which resulted in the discovery of more than 3200 images and 300 videos of child pornography.

Garcia will be in federal custody pending his sentencing hearing which is set for March 15, 2012, at 10:30 a.m. before Senior U.S. District Judge Janis Graham Jack.

This case, prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Lance Duke, 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.