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Child Exploitation

North Florida man indicted on child pornography charges

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - A Jacksonville Beach man was arrested on child pornography charges following an investigation by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and Jacksonville Sheriff's Office.

William Joseph McCarthy, 56, was indicted by a federal grand jury in Jacksonville on charges of receiving and transporting child pornography, and three counts of possessing child pornography.

McCarthy faces at least five years and up to 20 years in federal prison on each of the receipt and transportation counts.

On each of the possession counts, he faces a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison. This investigation was part of Operation Predator, a nationwide ICE initiative to identify, investigate and arrest those who prey on children, including human traffickers, international sex tourists, Internet pornographers, and foreign-national predators whose crimes make them deportable. Launched in July 2003, ICE agents have arrested almost 12,000 individuals through 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. 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.

An indictment is merely a formal charge that a defendant has committed a violation of the federal criminal laws, and every defendant is presumed innocent unless, and until, proven guilty.

Assistant U.S. Attorney D. Rodney Brown, Middle District of Florida, prosecuted this case.