The legal consequences for possession of child pornography are very strict, and authorities will likely pursue these types of charges rather vigorously.
In the spring of 2011, Internet service provider AOL reported to law enforcement authorities that the 52-year-old head of Immigration and Customs Enforcement for South Florida possessed four images of child pornography on his home computer. Federal and state authorities seized the special agent’s home computer and his ICE office computer.
Three months later, the ICE agent pleaded guilty to one count of possession of child pornography. While this child pornography charge carries a mandatory five-year prison sentence, he could wind up incarcerated for seven years if the prosecution has their way.
The ICE head had allegedly been chatting with other child pornography owners over the Internet, and he reportedly sent pictures of children to a Delaware man who is also accused of having illegal materials on his computer. One newspaper went as far to claim that the agent told people in these chat rooms that he was a mother and was sexually abusing her own children.
The accused man worked for the federal agency for 27 years. During his tenure, he attended seminars that provided education to work against child exploitation. The classes included about deleting files and histories from computers.
Possession and distribution of child pornography are crimes that carry consequences that linger much longer than the prison term. Child sex crimes lead to societal ostracism, which causes a loss of reputation, difficulty in finding future employment and even a reduction of choices of where to live.
In many cases, prosecutors may offer a sentencing deal in exchange for pleading guilty, yet the final decision rests with the court. Although reports do not indicate if there was a plea bargain in this case, important that the court handles the upcoming judgments with fairness, as there may be external pressure to automatically issue the most stringent possible sentence.
Source: Broward-Palm Beach NewTimes, “Anthony V. Mangione, Former ICE Chief, to Be Sentenced for Child Porn,” Chris Joseph, Nov. 9. 2012
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