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Child Exploitation
03/13/2009

Pennsylvania child predator receives a 14-year sentence

ICE works with London Metropolitan Police to stop child exploitation in Erie, Pa.

PHILADELPHIA - Ryan Adam Rodgers, 24, a resident of Erie, Pa., has been sentenced in federal court in Erie to 168 months in prison on his conviction of violating federal laws relating to the sexual exploitation of children on March 10.

During the investigation special agents from U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) found that Rodgers transported, received and possessed hundreds of computer images and movies depicting minors engaging in sexually explicit conduct. Many of the images depicted minors under the age of five. Rodgers also had images of children engaged in bestiality. Agents received assistance from the London, England Metropolitan Police during the investigation.

"Possession of child pornography is not a victimless crime," said John P. Kelleghan, special agent in charge for the ICE office of investigations in Philadelphia. "People who purchase child pornography support a ruthless international industry which exploits innocent children. Law enforcement around the world will work together to bring these criminals to justice."

The sentencing was announced jointly by Kelleghan and Mary Beth Buchanan, United States Attorney for the Western District of Pennsylvania. Senior United States District Judge Maurice B. Cohill, Jr. also ordered that Rodgers' prison term be followed by 15 years of supervised release. The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Christian A. Trabold.

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.

ICE encourages the public to report suspected child predators and any suspicious activity through its toll-free hotline at 1-866-347-2423. 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.