Wenatchee Man Sentenced To Ten Years In Federal Prison For Possession Of Child Pornography
Spokane - Michael C. Ormsby, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Washington, announced that Christopher Gary Carlson, age 40, of Wenatchee, Washington, was sentenced today after having previously pleaded guilty in November, 2013 to Possession of Child Pornography. Chief United States District Court Judge Rosanna Malof Peterson sentenced Carlson to a ten-year term of imprisonment, to be followed by a life term of court supervision after he is released from Federal prison.
According to information disclosed during the court proceedings, the Wenatchee Police Department received several reports last April of an individual using the username "warlock666" to trade images of child sex abuse over the Internet. U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) special agents joined the investigation and the law enforcement officers were able to determine "warlock666" was Carlson. They determined Carlson was using his cellphone to chat online about child pornography. The officers obtained a search warrant for the phone and they discovered more than 600 images of child pornography. Among the images were child exploitation victims younger than 5-years-old.
In addition, information was disclosed that Carlson was convicted in 2007 for the same offense – Possession of Child Pornography. Carlson has a history of non-compliance with sex offender registration requirements. Records show he has been convicted twice since 2009 in Delaware for failing to register as a sex offender.
Michael C. Ormsby stated, "I commend the collaborative work of the Wenatchee Police Department and HSI in this case. The United States Attorney's Office in the Eastern District of Washington is, and will continue to be, committed to prosecuting aggressively and seeking appropriate punishment for child pornography crimes. Prosecuting offenders who are collecting child pornography is a priority of the United States Attorney's Office."
"Those who trade child pornography are a part of a disturbing cycle of violence against children," said Brad Bench, special agent in charge of HSI Seattle. "Imagine being in your 20s, 30s or 40s and knowing that, in the shadows of the Internet, predators are trading images of your childhood sex abuse. This is what victims of this crime must live with for the rest of their lives."
This investigation was conducted under HSI's Operation Predator, an international initiative to protect children from sexual predators. Since the launch of Operation Predator in 2003, HSI has arrested more than 10,000 individuals for crimes against children, including the production and distribution of online child pornography, traveling overseas for sex with minors, and sex trafficking of children. In fiscal year 2013, more than 2,000 individuals were arrested by HSI special agents under this initiative.
This case was pursued as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in May 2006 by the United States 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. The Project Safe Childhood Initiative ("PSC") has five major components:
- Integrated federal, state, and local efforts to investigate and prosecute child exploitation cases, and to identify and rescue child victims;
- Participation of PSC partners in coordinated national initiatives;
- Increased federal enforcement in child pornography and enticement cases;
- Training of federal, state, and local law enforcement agents; and
- Community awareness and educational programs.
This investigation was by the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's Homeland Security Investigations and Wenatchee Police Department. The case was prosecuted by Stephanie J. Lister, an Assistant United States Attorney and PSC Coordinator for the Eastern District of Washington.