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Child Exploitation

Middle and high school cafeteria worker pleads guilty to online child exploitation

WILMINGTON, Del. – Following an investigation by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), a middle and high school cafeteria worker pleaded guilty Wednesday to online child exploitation crimes.

Abraham Sacharow, 43, of Baltimore, pleaded guilty to attempted transfer of obscene material to a minor, in violation of federal law, at a hearing in U.S. District Court, District of Delaware.

"Anyone who thinks that they can get away with sexual crimes committed against our children is mistaken," said John Kelleghan, special agent in charge of HSI Philadelphia. "These predators will be tracked down and prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law."

According to court documents, Sacharow contacted an undercover special agent posing as a 14-year-old girl in a Yahoo chat room Nov. 28, 2011. In December 2011, Sacharow 'friended' the fictitious teen on Facebook and began to send more frequent, sexual messages, offering to buy the teen a webcam and asking "would u be good or bad on cam." During subsequent online chats in December 2011 and January 2012, Sacharow told the teen he wanted to teach her about sex and transmitted a live webcam video of himself exposing his genitals.

In early January 2012, Sacharow made an online purchase of a webcam on Best Buy's website. Sacharow then instructed the undercover special agent to pick up the webcam at the Best Buy store, located at the Concord Mall in Wilmington.

Sacharow ended the chat session by telling the fictitious teen that he could not "wait to watch [her] on cam" and that "no other boys or men can watch [her]." Sacharow was arrested and his residence searched Jan. 25, 2012. He has been in prison since his arrest.

These investigations are part of Operation Predator, a nationwide HSI 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. HSI encourages the public to report suspected child predators and any suspicious activity through its toll-free hotline at 1-866-DHS-2ICE 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 the U.S. representative 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.