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Press Release

York County Man Charged With Child Exploitation Offenses

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Middle District of Pennsylvania

HARRISBURG - The United States Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Pennsylvania announced that John A. Swayze, age 56, of York, Pennsylvania, was indicted on October 23, 2019, by a federal grand jury on child exploitation charges.

According to United States Attorney David J. Freed, the indictment alleges that Swayze received and distributed child pornography, and possessed child pornography involving minors under the age of 12 between October 2017 and May 2019.  The two-count indictment also includes a notice of the Government’s intent to forfeit all images of child pornography and the electronic devices associated with those images.

This case was investigated by the Northeastern Regional Police Department with assistance from the Federal Bureau of Investigation.  Assistant United States Attorney James T. Clancy is prosecuting the case. 

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."

Indictments are only allegations. All persons charged are presumed to be innocent unless and until found guilty in court. 

A sentence following a finding of guilt is imposed by the Judge after consideration of the applicable federal sentencing statutes and the Federal Sentencing Guidelines. 

The maximum penalty for receipt and distribution of child pornography is 20 years’ imprisonment and a $250,000 fine.  That charge carries a mandatory minimum term of imprisonment of 5 years.  The maximum penalty for possession of child pornography involving minors under 12 years old is 20 years’ imprisonment and a $250,000 fine.  Under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, the Judge is also required to consider and weigh a number of factors, including the nature, circumstances and seriousness of the offense; the history and characteristics of the defendant; and the need to punish the defendant, protect the public and provide for the defendant's educational, vocational and medical needs. For these reasons, the statutory maximum penalty for the offense is not an accurate indicator of the potential sentence for a specific defendant.


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Updated October 25, 2019

Project Safe Childhood