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Child Exploitation

Indian national sentenced to 16 months for transporting obscene materials

MINNEAPOLIS - A man from India was sentenced in federal court here Wednesday for transporting obscene materials, including child pornography, into the United States.

Sudhir Porumamilla, 28, a citizen of India, was sentenced by U.S. District Court Judge Joan Ericksen to 16 months in prison. Porumamilla was charged with transporting obscene matters April 7, and he pleaded guilty April 28. After serving his prison sentence, he will be turned over to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and placed in deportation proceedings.

According to an ICE affidavit, Porumamilla arrived at the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport from India Jan. 8. During a routine inspection for arriving international passengers, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers discovered on his laptop computer and an external hard drive a photograph and a video both containing child pornography.

This sentence resulted from an investigation by ICE and the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport Police Department; it was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Erica H. MacDonald.

This investigation was 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 11,000 individuals, including more than 270 in Minnesota.

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 www.cybertipline.com.

This case is also part of Project Safe Childhood, a national Department of Justice initiative that encourages the use of multi-jurisdictional task forces to investigate and prosecute cases that involve the sexual exploitation of children over the Internet. PSC urges that law enforcement efforts be complemented by community-wide campaigns to assist victims of exploitation and to educate parents, other adults, and children about Internet safety.

According to the U.S. Department of Justice, one in 33 children receives an unwanted sexual solicitation online each year. One in four children experiences unwanted exposure to sexually explicit material on the Internet each year. And, more than 20,000 images of child pornography are posted on the Internet every week. Moreover, recent research conducted by the Federal Bureau of Prisons indicates a strong correlation between possessing or distributing child pornography and committing sexual-contact crimes against children.