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Child Exploitation

Bakersfield man sentenced to more than 8 years on child pornography charges

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. — A California man was sentenced Friday to more than eight years in prison on child pornography charges stemming from an investigation by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and the San Joaquin Valley's Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force.

David Durham, 61, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Lawrence J. O'Neill to eight years and one month in prison, followed by 15 years of supervised release, for receiving child pornography. The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Brian W. Enos.

According to court documents, Durham was found to have received more than 600 sexually explicit images of pre-pubescent minors in both video and still-image format. He pleaded guilty May 27 and has been in federal custody since that date.

"Every time a sexually explicit image of a minor is produced, transmitted, or viewed, a child is victimized," said Michael Toms, resident agent in charge of ICE Homeland Security Investigations in Bakersfield. "We will continue to work closely with our law enforcement partners locally, nationally, and internationally to seek justice for those who mistakenly believe the Internet makes them invisible and invincible."

This case is part of ICE'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 marshals federal, state, and local resources to locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who exploit children using the Internet.

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

Through Project Safe Childhood (PSC), the Department of Justice is seeking to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. For additional information on the PSC initiative, 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 PSC coordinator.