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Child Exploitation

Central Texas man sentenced to 188 months in prison for transporting and shipping child pornography

DALLAS — A Mesquite, Texas, man was sentenced Thursday to more than 15 1/2 years in prison, following his guilty plea to one count of transporting and shipping child pornography, announced U.S. Attorney Sarah R. Saldaña, Northern District of Texas.

The investigation was conducted by the Mesquite Police Department and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI).

Jeremy Blackburn, 33, was sentenced July 18 by U.S. District Judge Jane J. Boyle to 188 months in federal prison. Blackburn has been in custody since he pleaded guilty plea in March.

According to documents filed in the case, an undercover operation to identify persons participating in the distribution of child pornography and the sexual exploitation of children through the use of peer-to-peer file sharing networks resulted in the identification of Blackburn. A search warrant was executed at his residence in Mesquite in July 2012, where computer equipment was seized. A forensic analysis of the equipment revealed more than 600 images and videos of child pornography available to share on his file-sharing program.

Blackburn admitted in February 2012 that he used the Internet and file-sharing software to share and transmit image and video files depicting minors engaged in sexually explicit conduct. He admitted that he preferred younger girls (but not babies) and to downloading child pornography just 30 minutes prior to the execution of the search warrant. He also admitted that he sought, received and possessed images and videos that included bondage and other sadistic acts involving minors.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Camille Sparks, Northern District of Texas, prosecuted the case.

This investigation was part of Operation Predator, a nationwide HSI 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. HSI encourages the public to report suspected child predators and any suspicious activity through its toll-free hotline at 1-866-347-2423 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, 1-800-843-5678.

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.