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Child Exploitation
06/21/2012

Contract worker at warehouse store charged in federal child pornography probe

SEATTLE – A convicted sex offender was arrested on federal child pornography charges Thursday by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI). He allegedly secretly photographed young girls shopping at a local warehouse store where he worked and posted the pictures online.

Gregory Sean O'Neall, 51, of Des Moines, Wash., is charged with possession and distribution of child pornography. The HSI investigation revealed O'Neall posted several photo albums online, including more than 100 photos of young girls taken surreptitiously. Agents believe the photos were taken while the girls were shopping with their families at warehouse stores. Prior to his arrest, O'Neall worked as a food sample demonstrator at a Costco in Federal Way, Wash. In some of the photos, O'Neall's food sampler station is visible.

O'Neall came to the attention of HSI special agents because of his postings to an Internet file sharing site. Investigators were able to link an IP address used to share sexually explicit images of children to O'Neall.

Distribution of child pornography by someone previously convicted of a sex offense is punishable by a mandatory minimum sentence of 15 years in prison. According to the criminal complaint filed in the case, O'Neall is a registered sex offender based upon a 1991 criminal conviction in Texas.

The charges contained in the complaint are only allegations. A person is presumed innocent unless and until he or she is proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

As part of Operation Predator, HSI encourages the public to report suspected child predators and any suspicious activity through its toll-free hotline at 1-866-347-2423 or its online tip form. Suspected child sexual exploitation or missing children may be reported to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, an Operation Predator partner, at 1-800-843-5678 or http://www.cybertipline.com.