Erie Resident Pleads Guilty to Violating Federal Laws Related to the Sexual Exploitation of Children
PITTSBURGH - A former resident of Washington County, Pennsylvania, has been sentenced in federal court to 28 years’ incarceration, consecutive to any state court sentence, and lifetime supervised release on his conviction of Production of Material Depicting the Sexual Exploitation of a Minor and Possession of Material Depicting the Sexual Exploitation of a Minor, Acting United States Attorney Stephen R. Kaufman announced today.
United States District Judge Cathy Bissoon imposed the sentence on Sean Houston, age 48, of Brownsville, Pennsylvania. As part of his sentence, the Court ordered Houston to pay $13,709.60 in restitution and a $15,000 special assessment under the Justice for Victims of Trafficking Act of 2015 (JVTA).
According to information presented to the court, on May 20, 2016 and from July 22, 2017 through October 2018, Houston produced and attempted to produce visual depictions of the sexual exploitation of a minor. Additionally, on October 29, 2018, Houston knowingly possessed visual depictions of the sexual exploitation of minors.
Assistant United States Attorney Heidi M. Grogan prosecuted this case on behalf of the government.
United States Attorney Kaufman commended the Homeland Security Investigations, the Centerville Police Department, the North Strabane Police Department, and the Washington County District Attorney’s Office for the investigation leading to the successful prosecution of Houston.
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 www.justice.gov/psc.