This significant sentence is the result of an investigation by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), the Hamilton County Metro Child Exploitation Task Force and the Carmel (Indiana) Police Department.
Daniel Alan Jines, 37, of Whitestown, Ind., was sentenced to 680 months in federal prison after he was convicted of the following charges: 10 counts of producing, one count of receiving, and one count of possessing child pornography. Jines' sentence also includes a lifetime supervised release and a $5,000 fine.
"This is in essence a life term for Mr. Jines," said U.S. Attorney Joseph H. Hogsett, Southern District of Indiana. "If anyone is this district abuses children the way he did, my office will find you and prosecute you as aggressively as the law allows."
"While we are pleased with the significant sentence imposed, no amount of time behind bars seems adequate punishment for such monstrous behavior," said Gary Hartwig, special agent in charge of HSI Chicago. "Daniel Jines inflicted permanent psychological, physical and emotional scars on his young victim and deserves to spend the rest of his life in prison where he can never hurt another child. Protecting children from sexual abuse and exploitation is one of HSI's most vital missions."
According to court documents, the investigation into Jines' child pornography activity began with law enforcement detecting previously identified child pornography files being offered for download through an Internet connection traced to Jines' home. A search of his home on Feb. 20, 2013 uncovered a large, particularly disturbing collection of images depicting the sexual abuse of children. Jines was arrested during the search for receiving and possessing those images.
A continuing investigation uncovered that Jines had sexually abused a minor female for several years, beginning when she was 8 years old. Jines videotaped a portion of that abuse, occurring between May 2008 and May 2010 when the child was between 10 and 13 years of age. The content of those videos shocked even veteran child-abuse investigators.
"Approximately a year ago, this office launched Operation Community Watch, an effort to protect Hoosier children by identifying and bringing to justice those who would sexually exploit our children," said Hogsett. "This case is a prime example of how child pornography investigations, which can often transcend state and international borders, ultimately can lead to the protection of children who may live in neighborhoods right here in Indiana. Mr. Jines' horrific campaign of abuse fully justifies this long sentence, and is well-deserved."
"This is another example of why the child exploitation task force model is so important. This individual will no longer have the ability to victimize a child because highly skilled investigators from the local and federal level are able to work together with the U.S. Attorney's Office to focus on these important cases," said Capt. Andy Dietz, Director Hamilton County Metro Child Exploitation Task Force. "The sentence itself should serve as a warning to those out there who would prey upon our children that we are looking for you, and we will find you. Our greatest hope is that the attention this case gets will serve as a beacon to victims who continue to suffer in silence, so that they know there are people and organizations here to help them."
This investigation was conducted under HSI's Operation Predator, an international initiative to protect children from sexual predators. Since the launch of Operation Predator in 2003, HSI has arrested more than 10,000 individuals for crimes against children, including producing and distributing online child pornography, traveling overseas for sex with minors, and sex trafficking children. In fiscal year 2013, more than 2,000 individuals were arrested by HSI special agents under this initiative.
HSI encourages the public to report suspected child predators and any suspicious activity through its toll-free Tip Line at 1-866-DHS-2-ICE or by completing its online tip form. Both are staffed around the clock by investigators. Suspected child sexual exploitation or missing children may be reported to the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children, an Operation Predator partner, via its toll-free 24-hour hotline, 1-800-THE-LOST.
HSI is a founding member and current chair of the Virtual Global Taskforce, an international alliance of law enforcement agencies and private industry sector partners working together to prevent and deter online child sexual abuse.