Highland Resident Pleads Guilty To Child Pornography Offenses
James L. Porter, Acting United States Attorney for the Southern District of Illinois, announced today that on January 25, 2015, Richard Hogg, 55, Highland, IL, pled guilty to a five-count Indictment charging him, in Count 1, with Distribution of Child Pornography, in Counts 2 and 3, with Receipt of Child Pornography, in Count 4, with Access with Intent to View Child Pornography, and, in Count 5, with Possession of Prepubescent Child Pornography. Hogg was ordered detained (held without bond in the custody of the United States Marshal) immediately after his plea hearing ended. His sentencing date is April 29, 2016, in East St. Louis, Illinois.
On Counts 1 through 3, Hogg faces a term in federal prison of not less than five (5) years but not more than twenty (20) years, a fine up to $250,000, and a term of supervised release of five (5) years to life after his prison sentence. On Count 4, Hogg faces a term in prison of not more than ten (10) years, a fine up to $250,000, and a term of supervised release of five (5) years to life. On Count 5, Hogg faces a term in prison of not more than twenty (20) years, a fine up to $250,000, and a term of supervised release of five (5) years to life.
The charges arose after an Intelligence Analyst with the FBI found information on the internet that Hogg had engaged in a sexually explicit chat with a person Hogg apparently believed to be a minor female, as well as other reports of Hogg soliciting minors to engage in sex acts. Based on this information, on February 3, 2015, the FBI Intelligence Analyst and a FBI Special Agent went to Hogg’s residence. Hogg admitted chatting online with a girl he believed to be sixteen years old who resided in New York, and that the chats were sexual in nature.
Hogg stated that he began viewing pornography in 2007, and that he gradually started viewing younger females. When asked if images of prepubescent children would be found on his computer, Hogg replied in the affirmative. When asked what the pictures he owned showed with respect to the minor females, Hogg replied "everything." When asked how often he chatted with young females online, Hogg said that it likely occurred a "few times a month." Hogg estimated that he had approximately 1,000 images and four videos of child pornography on his computers, and that they would be found in the "My Pictures" folder. Hogg said that the images typically included a "dad" with their children.
A forensic review of two of Hogg’s desktop computers and of an external hard drive revealed that these devices contained approximately 1,206 image and 54 video files of child pornography, with many of the images being of prepubescent children. The forensic review also indicated that, from on or about July 26, 2014, until on or about November 20, 2014, Hogg distributed image and/or video files via the Internet and that he received image and/or video files of child pornography, on July 26 and August 28, 2014, also via the Internet. Finally, the forensic review revealed that, on or about November 20, 2014, Hogg attempted to access with the intent to view an image of child pornography, via the Internet.
This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in 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.usdoj.gov/psc. For more information about internet safety education, please visit www.usdoj.gov/psc and click on the tab Aresources.@
The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation=s Springfield Child Exploitation Task Force. The case is assigned to Assistant United States Attorney Angela Scott.