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Press Release

Orange County Man Sentenced to Federal Prison for Child Pornography Violations

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Eastern District of Texas

BEAUMONT, Texas – An Orange, Texas man has been sentenced to federal prison for child pornography violations in the Eastern District of Texas, announced U.S. Attorney Brit Featherston today.

Joshua Welch, 50, pleaded guilty on Sep. 20, 2021, to production of child pornography and was sentenced to 240 months in federal prison today by U.S. District Judge Marcia A. Crone.

“Those who choose to harm a child will quickly find themselves the number one target of law enforcement,” said U.S. Attorney Brit Featherston.  “No stone will be left un-turned to stop child predators.  Our law enforcement partners are dedicated to protecting our most precious population.  Thank you to those men and women who work tirelessly to make our community playgrounds and our virtual playgrounds a safe place for all children.”

According to information presented in court, in April 2021, federal agents in Beaumont received information from federal agents in Syracuse, NY, regarding an internet user who had uploaded images containing child pornography and sent them to another user.  An investigation had determined the initial sender of the material was in Orange, Texas.  On May 17, 2021, federal agents issued a search warrant at the residence in Orange and encountered Welch.  Welch admitted to producing the child pornography images and downloading.  He also admitted to visiting other internet websites to view images of child pornography.  Welch was indicted by a federal grand jury on June 2, 2021.

This case is 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 U.S. Attorneys’ Offices and the Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section (CEOS), 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

This case was investigated by Homeland Security Investigations and the Orange County Sheriff’s Office and prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Rachel Grove.



Updated March 25, 2022

Project Safe Childhood