Gulfport Man Pleads Guilty to Production of Child Pornography
Gulfport, Miss. -- A Gulfport man pled guilty to producing visual depictions of a minor engaging in sexually explicit conduct, announced U.S. Attorney Darren J. LaMarca and Special Agent in Charge Jermicha Fomby of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
According to court documents, Derrick Patrick Flanagan, 38, was identified in February of 2022 in an investigation brought to the Mississippi Attorney General’s Office Cyber Crime Division and the Federal Bureau of Investigation by the Hancock County Sheriff’s Office. The Sheriff’s Office had received two CyberTip Reports from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. One of the reports used the name “John Adams” with a gmail.com email address and the other account was under the name of “Derrick Flanagan” and used another gmail.com email address. These CyberTips were ultimately found to be related to Hancock County Deputy Derrick Flanagan, who was assigned to work at the Diamondhead Police Department and resided in Gulfport.
Forensic examinations of a laptop and cellular telephones recovered during the investigation found multiple visual depictions of child sexual abuse material. In addition, the investigation recovered over 40,000 lines of chats sent via a SnapChat App that corresponded to multiple visual depictions.
Flanagan is scheduled to be sentenced on August 15, 2023 and faces a maximum penalty of 30 years in prison, unless he is determined to have a qualifying prior conviction under federal sexual exploitation statues, military law, or any state law, to include but not limited to, aggravated sexual abuse, sexual abuse, and abusive sexual conduct involving a minor, where he would then face a penalty of not less than 25 years nor more than 50 years in prison, and a fine of not more than $250,000. A federal district judge will determine any sentence after considering the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.
The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Mississippi Attorney General’s Office Cyber Crime Division, and the Hancock County Sheriff’s Office. Assistant U.S. Attorney Andrea Jones is prosecuting the case.
This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice. Led by U.S. Attorneys' Offices and the Criminal Division's 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 www.projectsafechildhood.gov.