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Child Exploitation

Corpus Christi man sentenced to 18 years for possessing child pornography

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas - A Corpus Christi man has been sentenced to 18 years in prison for possessing child pornography announced United States Attorney José Angel Moreno on Wednesday. The investigation was conducted by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI).

Donald Earl Marsh, 62, was sentenced Jan. 12 by Senior U.S. District Judge Hayden Head to 216 months in federal prison without parole, to be followed by a lifetime term of supervised release, a $25,000 fine and registering as a sex offender for the rest of his life. Marsh has a past pattern of sexual exploitation of children, including prior convictions from Oklahoma in 1990 for forcible sodomy and assault to commit a felony rape, both of which were perpetrated against children.

Marsh pleaded guilty in October 2010, admitting he had placed images of child pornography on his shared, work-issued laptop on Aug. 19, 2010. Those images were discovered by a co-worker who used the computer after it was last possessed by Marsh. Marsh was contacted by the San Patricio County Sheriff's Office and admitted to having an interest in child pornography.

ICE HSI agents and the Corpus Christi Police Department (CCPD) executed search warrants at Marsh's residence, discovering electronic media storage devices containing 540 images of child pornography. The images consisted of minors engaged in sexually explicit conduct. Many of the images and videos depicted victims previously identified as real children by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC).

Marsh has been in custody since his arrest on Aug. 23, 2010 and will remain in custody pending transfer to a Bureau of Prisons facility where he will serve out his sentence.

This investigation was part of Operation Predator, a nationwide ICE initiative to protect children from sexual predators, including those who travel overseas for sex with minors, Internet child pornographers, criminal alien sex offenders, and child sex traffickers.

ICE encourages the public to report suspected child predators and any suspicious activity through its toll-free hotline at 1-866-DHS-2ICE. This hotline is staffed around the clock by investigators.

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.