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Child Exploitation
02/04/2014

Washington state sex offender sentenced to 10 years for child pornography

SPOKANE, Wash. – A Wenatchee man convicted in 2007 for possession of child pornography was sentenced Tuesday to 10 years in prison after being caught last year committing the same offence by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and the Wenatchee Police Department.

Christopher Gary Carlson, 40, pleaded guilty to possession of child pornography in November 2013. According to court records, Wenatchee police received several reports last April of an individual using the username "warlock666" trading images of child sex abuse over the Internet. HSI special agents joined the probe and investigators were able to connect Carslon to the "warlock666" account. Investigators learned he was using his cellphone to chat online about child pornography and obtained a search warrant for the phone, which turned up a cache of more than 600 images of child pornography. Depicted among the photos were child exploitation victims younger than 5 years old.

"Those who trade child pornography are a part of a disturbing cycle of violence against children," said Brad Bench, special agent in charge of HSI Seattle. "The victims of this crime continue to suffer the consequences of child sex abuse well into adulthood. They must also live with the knowledge that people like Carlson continue to trade images of their abuse on the Internet."

In addition to his 2007 child pornography conviction, prosecutors say Carlson has a history of non-compliance with sex offender registration requirements. Records show he has been convicted twice since 2009 in Delaware for failing to register as a sex offender. Following his release, Carlson will remain under court supervision for the rest of his life.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Washington prosecuted the case.

This investigation was conducted under HSI's Operation Predator, an international initiative to protect children from sexual predators. Since the launch of Operation Predator in 2003, HSI has arrested more than 10,000 individuals for crimes against children, including the production and distribution of online child pornography, traveling overseas for sex with minors, and sex trafficking of children. In fiscal year 2013, more than 2,000 individuals were arrested by HSI special agents under this initiative.

HSI encourages the public to report suspected child predators and any suspicious activity through its toll-free Tip Line at 1-866-DHS-2-ICE 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.

For additional information about wanted suspected child predators, download HSI's Operation Predator smartphone app or visit the online suspect alerts page.

HSI is a founding member and current chair 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.