PHILADELPHIA - Daniel Earl Eyster, 49, of Adamstown, Penn., was sentenced on Wednesday to 840 months in prison for one count of sexual exploitation of children and one count of possession of child pornography, following an investigation by special agents from U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). The ICE investigation found that Eyster had exploited four minor children.
According to court documents, Eyster "employed, used, persuaded, induced, enticed and coerced, the minors to engage in sexually explicit conduct from November 2007 through July 2008 for the purpose of producing visual depictions of the conduct." ICE agents seized approximately 75 digital photographs found on a computer thumb drive.
The child pornography charge involved more than 2,000 digital photos and videos purchased off the internet and stored on Eyster's computer. Agents believe the visual depictions were produced using materials that had been mailed, shipped and transported in interstate and foreign commerce.
Eyster pleaded guilty to the charges in March. U.S. District Court Judge James Knoll Gardner sentenced Eyster to the guideline and statutory maximum. In addition, Judge Gardner ordered Eyster to pay a $3,000 fine and ordered the forfeiture of Eyster's house where Eyster took some of the photos.
The sentence was announced by U. S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania and John P. Kelleghan, special agent in charge of the ICE Office of Investigations in Philadelphia.
"The exploitation of our most innocent citizens, children, is a horrendous crime, and this significant 70 year sentence will protect the Pennsylvania community from this individual," according to Kelleghan. "It is also a warning to other sexual predators that the law enforcement community will work tirelessly to protect children."
During the investigation, ICE worked with the Pennsylvania State Police, as well as local police departments in Pennsylvania and Kentucky. The case was prosecuted by Assistant U. S. Attorney Frank A. Labor III.
This investigation was part of Operation Predator, a nationwide ICE initiative launched in 2003 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.
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.