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Child Exploitation
11/10/2010

North Texas man pleads guilty to receiving child pornography

FORT WORTH, Texas - A north Texas man pleaded guilty on Wednesday before U.S. Magistrate Judge Jeffrey L. Cureton to one count of receiving child pornography, announced U.S. Attorney James T. Jacks of the Northern District of Texas.  This case was investigated by the U.S. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Office of Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), the Saginaw Police Department, and the Sansom Park Police Department.

Robert John Devalk, 38, of Saginaw, Texas, has been in custody since his arrest in August 2010. He faces a maximum statutory sentence of not less than five or more than 20 years in prison, a $250,000 fine and a lifetime of supervised release. Sentencing is set for Feb. 22 before U.S. District Judge Terry R. Means.

According to documents filed with his plea, on June 25, Saginaw Police Department detectives executed a search warrant at Devalk's residence.  A forensic examination of his computer and related storage was conducted and officers discovered more than 100 images of child pornography.  Devalk admitted that he knowingly received, via the Internet, images and videos of child pornography of children ranging as young as 10 years old engaged in posing and in sexual acts.

According to the affidavit filed with a criminal complaint, on June 24, a Saginaw Police Department detective advised that during an interview, a 16-year-old victim described details of sexual encounters with Devalk that occurred at the defendant's home.  The victim stated that they had sexual intercourse and that during one of the sexual encounters, Devalk video recorded it and stored it on his computer.  The victim was able to see the sexual encounter on the computer screen as it occurred.

This investigation is 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.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Alex C. Lewis, Northern District of Texas, is prosecuting this case.