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Child Exploitation

Louisiana man sentenced in federal court on child pornography charges

LAKE CHARLES, La. — Shelton Peter Fruge, 35, of Lake Charles, was sentenced to 60 years in prison and a lifetime of supervised release for production of child pornography, to run consecutively with his state sentence, following an investigation conducted by special agents with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and the Louisiana State Police (LSP).

Fruge pleaded guilty in October 2010, to two counts of child pornography production, in which he sexually assaulted very young girls and photographed the molestation. Initially, he photographed the children in sexually explicit poses.

As the exploitation progressed, Fruge began photographing a six-year-old girl as he raped her. After producing the hard core prepubescent child pornography, Fruge would then trade the images with other people and discuss ways to further sexually assault the young children. After discovering the images the defendant had produced of the children on the Internet, ICE HSI agents executed a search warrant at Fruge's residence. During the search, they discovered child pornography that he had downloaded from the Internet and images of the two minor females. Fruge confessed to producing the child pornography.

At Frudge's Jan. 27 sentencing imposed by U. S. District Judge Patricia Minaldi in the Western District of Louisiana, Judge Minaldi stated that this was among the worst cases she has ever been involved with in her entire career.

"HSI relentlessly pursues predators who sexually abuse children, whether that abuse is physical in nature or if it is accomplished by exploiting their images," said Raymond R. Parmer, Jr., special agent in charge of ICE HSI in New Orleans. "Our special agents will continue to police cyberspace and target those who exploit one of the most defenseless segments of our society – our children."

U.S. Attorney Stephanie A. Finley stated, "Anyone who thinks they can commit such vile acts against the most vulnerable should think twice before doing it in this district. Our office, along with our federal, state and local partners, will vigorously investigate and prosecute those who prey on the children of our community."

The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney John Luke Walker.