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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Southern District of Texas

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Marine Pilot Pleads Guilty to Possession of Child Pornography

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas – A 44-year-old Corpus Christi man has admitted to possessing child pornography, announced U.S. Attorney Kenneth Magidson. Jason Michael Ehret, an active duty Marine Corps major serving as an aviation flight instructor, pleaded guilty today.

The court heard today that Corpus Christi Police Department detectives, while using peer-to-peer software, were able to successfully download various files containing child pornography from an IP address that was associated with Ehret.

In March 2016, agents executed a search warrant at Ehret’s residence, at which time they seized various electronic devices. Forensic analysis on those devices revealed more than 160 images and approximately four videos of child pornography.

Senior U.S. District Judge Janis Graham Jack accepted the guilty plea today and set sentencing for Jan. 25, 2017. At that time, Ehret faces up to 20 years in federal prison and a possible $250,000 maximum fine. Upon completion of any prison term imposed, Ehret also faces a maximum of life on supervised release during which time the court can impose a number of special conditions designed to protect children and prohibit the use of the Internet. 

Ehret was arrested on the federal charges in September 2016 and has been in custody since that time where he will remain pending his sentencing.

Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations conducted the investigation with the assistance of Naval Criminal Investigative Service and the Corpus Christi Police Department—Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force.

This case, prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Hugo R. Martinez, 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."

Topic(s): 
Project Safe Childhood
Component(s): 
Updated November 22, 2016