CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — A Rockport, Texas, man pleaded guilty in federal court Monday to possessing child pornography, announced U.S. Attorney Kenneth Magidson, Southern District of Texas. The investigation was conducted by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), and the Corpus Christi Police Department's Internet Crimes against Children Task Force (CCPD-ICAC).
Nicholas Brown, 24, was indicted for possessing child pornography on Aug. 24, 2011. On Monday, Brown stipulated that he possessed more than 100 videos of child pornography. Those videos were discovered during an investigation by the U.S. Marshals Service (USMS). USMS agents had been seeking a sex offender with whom Brown had been residing who had not registered with local authorities as required by law. Brown was contacted regarding that investigation and consented to a search of the computers in his residence.
The computers were turned over to the CCPD-ICAC which conducted a forensic examination that revealed the presence of child pornography. ICE HSI agents, in partnership with CCPD-ICAC, discovered the pornographic material, concluding that Brown was responsible. Brown admitted to both constructing and being the sole user of the computer containing the child pornography. Many of the images and videos found were minors engaging in sexually explicit conduct. The victims were previously identified as known victims by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.
Brown was ordered into federal custody following his Jan. 9 guilty plea where he will remain pending his sentencing hearing, currently set for March 15 before Senior U.S. District Judge Janis Graham Jack.
ICE encourages the public to report suspected child predators and any suspicious activity through its toll-free hotline at 1-866-DHS-2ICE or 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 www.cybertipline.com.