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July 9, 2012

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Former Houston Pilot Sentenced to Prison for Distribution and Possession of Child Pornography

HOUSTON – Todd Steven Ewanko, 48, an Humble, Texas, resident and former commercial pilot, has been handed a 151-month prison term following his convictions for distribution and possession of child pornography, United States Attorney Kenneth Magidson announced today. Ewanko pleaded guilty Feb. 6, 2012.

Today, U.S. District Judge Kenneth M. Hoyt sentenced him to 151 months for the distribution charge in addition to a 120 months on the possession charge which will be served concurrently.  Upon completion of the prison term, Ewanko will further serve a term of life on supervised release. Judge Hoyt further ordered restitution in the amount of $3,000 to be paid to one of the victims in a child pornography collection found on the Internet.

On June 20, 2010, an undercover officer with the Harris County Constable’s Office, Precinct 4, was conducting an online investigation into the trafficking of child pornography when the officer observed a particular computer actively advertising files for sharing which, based on their titles, appeared to be child pornography. The officer successfully downloaded eight of the 25 available files, one of which depicted a nude prepubescent female lying on a bed on her back, tied up with nylon rope with her genitals exposed in a lascivious manner. The computer was traced to Ewanko in Humble.

On July 1, 2010, officers executed a state search warrant at his residence, at which time they seized a large quantity of computer hardware and storage devices. Of those, two laptops, two desktop computers with a total of 10 hard drives, a digital picture frame and two external hard drives were all found to contain child pornography. Officers also found a number of CD/DVDs, some with a picture label that was itself child pornography and some with written labels indicating it contained child pornography. The officers also noted that the screen saver on a computer also depicted child pornography. The forensic exam on the equipment yielded millions of images and videos containing child pornography or child erotica. 

He has been in custody since his arrest where he will remain pending transfer to a U.S. Bureau of Prisons facility to be determined in the near future.

This case, prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Robert Stabe and investigated by the Houston Metro Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, 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 the United States Attorneys' Offices and the Criminal Division's Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state and local resources to locate, apprehend and prosecute individuals who sexually exploit children, and to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit For more information about internet safety education, please visit and click on the tab "resources."