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Child Exploitation

Dallas County man admits producing child pornography

DALLAS - A north Texas man pleaded guilty last week to one count of producing child pornography, announced U.S. Attorney James T. Jacks of the Northern District of Texas. The case was investigated by the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Office of Homeland Security Investigations (HSI).

Larry Pike, 40, of Balch Springs, Texas, has been in federal custody since his arrest in late August 2010 on related charges outlined in a federal criminal complaint. According to the terms of the plea agreement, if the Court accepts the plea, it is agreed that the appropriate term of imprisonment in this case should be 20 years in prison. In addition, Pike could be ordered to pay a fine of up to $250,000 and serve up to a lifetime of supervised release. He will also have to forfeit to the government the extensive inventory of computers and computer-related equipment that was seized during the investigation. Sentencing is set for March 10, before U.S. District Judge Jane J. Boyle.

According to documents filed in the case, while conducting an investigation into the use of file-sharing software to distribute child pornography, an undercover police officer received child pornography from Pike's computer using LimeWire file-sharing software. On June 3, 2010, ICE HSI agents executed a federal search warrant at Pike's Balch Springs home that he shared with his mother and stepfather. Several computers and other media were seized from Pike's bedroom. A preliminary forensic exam shows that to date, more than 5000 videos of child pornography have been found on the equipment, with a large number involving prepubescent children and sadistic/masochistic images.

In addition, the computer forensic exam revealed more than 80 photographs of "Jane Doe," a 17-year-old girl who had been enticed by Pike to engage in sexually explicit conduct with him so that he could photograph it. Pike provided the girl alcohol before he took the photos in an effort to impair her ability to appraise or control her conduct.

In the defendant's detention order, issued August 30, 2010, the Court noted testimony at Pike's detention hearing that Pike had contacted two women after ICE HSI agents executed the search warrant at his residence. He told one of them that if she was contacted by police to say that she was 18 years old. He told the other woman that she "did not need to be talking to anyone," that it was "not lying" if she refused to talk, and that she needed "to stop talking about anything to anyone involving this." One of the women told agents that, while she was still a minor, she saw images of child pornography on Pike's computer and recognized some of the victims to be students from Pike's martial arts class.

If anyone has any information regarding other potential victims of sexual abuse by Larry Pike, please contact ICE at 866-347-2423.

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.

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.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Camille Sparks, Northern District of Texas, is prosecuting this case.