Fort Myers, Florida – U.S. District Judge Thomas P. Barber has sentenced Frederick Charles Trueblood, Jr. (47, North Fort Myers) to 14 years in federal prison for attempting to coerce and entice a minor to engage in sexual activity and for possessing images and videos depicting the sexual abuse of children. Trueblood was also sentenced to a 10-year concurrent prison term for attempting to transfer obscene material to a minor. In addition, he was ordered to serve a life term of supervised release and to register as a sex offender.
Trueblood had pleaded guilty on October 30, 2020.
According to court documents, FBI agents began an undercover investigation to identify individuals who approach children in online chat rooms to lure them into sexual activity. Between May 13 and 14, 2019, Trueblood sent an unsolicited chat message to an individual whom he believed to be a 13-year-old girl but was actually an undercover agent. During the chat, Trueblood asked the “child” to send him graphic nude images exposing herself to him. Trueblood also sent multiple explicit pictures of himself to the “child.”
On August 23, 2019, FBI agents executed a federal search warrant at Trueblood’s home and seized his computers. During an interview with agents, Trueblood admitted that he had used the chat site “just for sexual fun.” He admitted that quickly after meeting kids on the chat site that he would have sexually explicit conversations with them and that he had sent pictures of his penis to many children on the chat site, and that another chat site had actually banned him for sending such pictures to kids. A subsequent forensic examination of Trueblood’s computers revealed numerous images and videos depicting the sexual abuse of young children that he had been collecting since May 2018.
This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Fort Myers Child Exploitation and Human Trafficking Task Force. It was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Yolande G. Viacava.
This is another case 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 www.justice.gov/psc.