Conroe Man Sentenced for Producing Child Pornography and Possessing More Than 10,000 Images
HOUSTON – A 59-year-old man from the Conroe area has been ordered to federal prison following his conviction of sexual exploitation of a child as well as distribution and possession of child pornography, announced Acting U.S. Attorney Abe Martinez. Robert Neal Hatchell pleaded guilty Dec. 19, 2016, admitting he took sexually-explicit photographs and a video of minor relatives and possessed more than 10,000 pornographic images.
Today, U.S. District Judge Lynn N. Hughes handed Hatchell sentences of 15 years each for the production and distribution charges as well as 10 years for possession child pornography. The sentences will run concurrently. He was further ordered to pay a $10,000 fine and will serve 10 years of supervised release following completion of the prison term, during which time he will have to comply with numerous requirements designed to restrict his access to children and the Internet. He will also be ordered to register as a sex offender.
Hatchell first came to the attention of authorities as part of a nationwide investigation into the online sexual exploitation of children. Hatchell, who was identified online as “kiddycat,” had posted images of child pornography on a known child pornography website. During the execution of a search warrant at Hatchell’s residence, law enforcement discovered that he produced pornographic images and videos of two minor relatives. Hatchell had 26 images and videos of those minors as well as 1515 videos and 10,873 images containing child pornography.
At the time of his plea, Hatchell admitted to taking sexually explicit photographs and a video of the minors. He further distributed these images to others who share his sexual interest in children.
He will remain in custody pending transfer to a U.S. Bureau of Prisons facility to be determined in the near future.
The FBI conducted the investigation.
This case, prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Sherri L. Zack, 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 www.usdoj.gov/psc. For more information about internet safety education, please visit www.usdoj.gov/psc and click on the tab "resources."