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Child Exploitation

Arlington man pleads guilty to federal child pornography charge

FORT WORTH, Texas - An Arlington, Texas, resident pleaded guilty on Wednesday before U.S. Magistrate Judge Charles Bleil to one count of possessing child pornography. This plea was announced by U.S. Attorney James T. Jacks, Northern District of Texas; the case is being investigated by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).

Tung Ngo, 43, has been in custody since his arrest in late August 2009. He faces a maximum statutory sentence of 10 years in prison, a lifetime of supervised release and a $250,000 fine. He will be required to register as a sex offender. Sentencing is set for April 12 before U.S. District Judge Terry R. Means.

On Aug. 28, an ICE agent visited Ngo's residence based on a lead from a local ICE undercover investigation. The lead concerned a target at the Ngo residence who allowed child pornography to be viewed via the Internet. Ngo allowed the agents to search his computer and related storage media where they discovered child pornography. Ngo admitted he knowingly possessed and acquired child pornography on his computer from the Internet. He admitted using the search terms "PTHC" and "preteen hardcore" in acquiring his child pornography.

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. Since Operation Predator was launched in July 2003, ICE agents have arrested more than 12,000 individuals.

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.

This case is being prosecuted as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice. Led by U.S. Attorneys' Offices and the Criminal Division's Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section (CEOS), Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state and local resources to better locate, apprehend and prosecute individuals who exploit children via the Internet, as well as to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, visit www.projectsafechildhood.gov.

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