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Child Exploitation

West Texas man sentenced to more than 7 years in federal prison on child pornography

SAN ANGELO, Texas — A west Texas man was sentenced Wednesday to 87 months in federal prison and 10 years of supervised release for child pornography violations.

This sentence was announced by U.S. Attorney Sarah R. Saldaña of the Northern District of Texas.

This investigation was conducted by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), and the Brown County Sheriff's Office.

Brian Bernard Willin, 48, of Brownwood, Texas, pleaded guilty in November 2012 to one count of receiving child pornography, and aiding and abetting. U.S. District Judge Sam R. Cummings also ordered Willin to pay $150,000 restitution to an individual who was depicted in an image Willin possessed.

Willin was indicted in August 2012 on four counts of receiving child pornography, one count of transporting child pornography and one count of possessing child pornography. According to plea documents filed in the case, Willin admitted that he used a peer-to-peer file-sharing program that he had installed on his computer to download and view several images depicting minors engaging in sexually explicit conduct. He saved some of the material on his computer and onto a DVD.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Steven M. Sucsy, Northern District of Texas, prosecuted this 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 1-866-347-2423 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, via its toll-free 24-hour hotline, 1-800-843-5678.

HSI is a founding member and current chair of the Virtual Global Taskforce, an international alliance of law enforcement agencies and private industry sector partners working together to prevent and deter online child sexual abuse.