Brian David Clayworth, 43, of Citrus Heights, was sentenced Friday by U.S. District Judge Garland E. Burrell Jr. to four years in prison, followed by 10 years of supervised release. The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Kyle Reardon.
According to court documents, in December 2004, federal special agents in Los Angeles received information about a website selling access to child pornography. During that investigation, Clayworth was identified through email and financial records as someone who had purchased child pornography from the website on October 11, 2004.
In April 2007, special agents interviewed Clayworth at his home about the information that they had learned in the Los Angeles investigation. During the interview, Clayworth admitted to using the Internet to access child pornography websites. He further acknowledged he had been on his computer that morning looking at child pornography on the Internet.
Approximately 7,000 images and 200 videos were found on Clayworth's desktop computer, another 600 images and 25 videos were found on his laptop computer, and more than 10,000 images and 400 videos were found on his external hard drive. Also found on the computers were emails documenting subscriptions to Internet-based child pornography websites, links to newsgroups known to trade child pornography, bookmarked child pornography websites, and keyword searches tied to child pornography.
"There are few crimes as heinous as those that involve the exploitation of innocent children," said Clark Settles, special agent in charge of HSI San Francisco. "I applaud the diligence and commitment of the HSI special agents in Sacramento who investigated this case and brought the defendant to justice."
This investigation is part of HSI's Operation Predator, a nationwide initiative to identify, investigate and arrest those who sexually exploit children, and the Department of Justice's Project Safe Childhood, which was launched to increase federal prosecution of child sex predators, and to reduce the number of Internet crimes against children including child pornography trafficking.
As part of Operation Predator, HSI encourages the public to report suspected child predators and any suspicious activity through its toll-free hotline at 1-866-347-2423 or 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 and Exploited Children, an Operation Predator partner, at 1-800-843-5678 or http://www.cybertipline.com.
As a part of Project Safe Childhood, the U.S. Attorney's Office has teamed with state and local agencies and organizations to increase law enforcement presence on the Internet, and to educate the public about safe Internet use, thereby reducing the risk that children might fall prey to online sexual predators. For additional information on Project Safe Childhood, please go to www.projectsafechildhood.gov or call the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of California and ask to speak with the Project Safe Childhood coordinator.