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Child Exploitation

Northwest Arkansas man sentenced for production of child pornography

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – A man from Rogers, Ark., was sentenced Tuesday to 25 years in prison for production of child pornography, following an investigation by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and the Rogers Police Department.

Robert J. Fortier was also ordered to pay $25,000 in fines, $600 in restitution and to serve a lifetime of supervised release upon his release from prison.

According to court filings, on Sept. 18, 2010, officers of the Rogers Police Department were dispatched to a residence in Rogers, in reference to a possible rape. Upon arrival, a man reported that his nine and 10-year-old daughters had been sexually assaulted by Fortier, who was also living at the residence.

The defendant used his cell phone to capture images of one of the girls posed in sexually explicit ways and in various stages of undress. Fortier entered a plea of guilty on June 7 for production of child pornography using his cell phone.

Fortier had previously been convicted of first degree sexual assault in Madison, Wis., and he committed the present offense while on probation for theft of property in Benton County, Ark.

The 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.

ICE encourages the public to report suspected child predators and any suspicious activity through its toll-free hotline at 1-866-DHS-2ICE and 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 and Exploited Children, an Operation Predator partner, at 1-800-843-5678 or http://www.cybertipline.com.