OFFICE OF THE UNITED STATES ATTORNEY
NORTHERN DISTRICT OF WEST VIRGINIA
Sharon L. Potter
UNITED STATES ATTORNEY
1125 Chapline Street, Federal Building, Suite 3000 ● Wheeling, WV 26003
(304) 234-0100 ● Contact: Fawn E. Thomas, Public Affairs Specialist
July 24, 2009
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Morgantown Resident Entered Guilty Plea
to Child Pornography Charge
CLARKSBURG, WEST VIRGINIA — A 25 year old Morgantown, West Virginia, resident entered a plea of guilty on July 22, 2009, in United States District Court in Clarksburg before Magistrate Judge John S. Kaull.
United States Attorney Sharon L. Potter announced that JAMES BELLOTTE entered a plea of guilty to one count of an Indictment charging him with possession of child pornography on February 8, 2008, in Monongalia County.
BELLOTTE, who is currently free on bond pending sentencing, faces a maximum penalty of 10 years imprisonment and a fine of $250,000.
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 was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Sherry L. Muncy. The case was investigated by the Monongalia County Sheriff’s Department and the United States Secret Service.
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