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Child Exploitation

Illinois man sentenced to 27 years for transporting, possessing child pornography

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – A local man was sentenced Monday to 27 years in federal prison for transporting and possessing child pornography. The sentence resulted from an investigation conducted by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), and the U.S. Marshals Service (USMS), with assistance provided by Texas law enforcement agencies.

James E. Bowen, 53, of Springfield, was sentenced June 4 in the Central District of Illinois to serve concurrent prison terms of 27 years for transporting child pornography and 20 years for possessing child pornography. After he completes his prison term, U.S. District Judge Sue E. Myerscough ordered Bowen to remain under supervised release for life.

Bowen has remained in USMS custody since his arrest by HSI special agents in July 2011. He pleaded guilty to transporting and possessing child pornography Dec. 14. He admitted he transported images of child pornography from Texas to Springfield on various computer hard drives in March 2011. Bowen further admitted transporting and possessing more than 100,000 images of child pornography, including sadistic and masochistic movies and images.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Matthew J. Cannon, Central District of Illinois, 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-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, at 1-800-843-5678 or http://www.cybertipline.com.