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Child Exploitation

East Texas man pleads guilty to producing child pornography

BEAUMONT, Texas - A man from Orange, Texas, pleaded guilty on Friday to producing child pornography, announced U.S. Attorney John M. Bales, Eastern District of Texas. The investigation was conducted by the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), the Beaumont Police Department, and the Orange County Sheriff's Office.

Riley Rich Gibson III, 28, also known as "Trae," pleaded guilty May 20 before U.S. District Judge Ron Clark. He appeared before Judge Clark for a scheduled competency hearing. Once he was found competent, he entered a guilty plea.

According to court documents, on Sep. 23, 2010, a federal search warrant was executed at Gibson's residence located in the 1500 block of Link Avenue in Orange, Texas. A search of Gibson's personal computer revealed images of child pornography, some of which are alleged to have been produced by Gibson. Gibson used his cell phone camera to photograph a girl younger than 3 years old in sexually explicit poses.

Gibson was arrested at the residence and had an initial appearance before U.S. Magistrate Judge Earl S. Hines on Sep. 27 where he was remanded into custody pending a detention hearing. A federal grand jury indicted Gibson Oct. 6.

Gibson faces a minimum of 15 years and up to 30 years in federal prison at sentencing. A sentencing date has not been set.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Christopher T. Tortorice, Eastern District of Texas, is prosecuting this case.

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.