Chesterton Tribune



Valpo man gets seven years after pleading to possession of child porn

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A Valparaiso resident has been sentenced to seven years in federal prison after pleading guilty to the charge of possession of child pornography, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Indiana said.

Jeffrey A. Smith, 33, was sentenced last week. In addition to a prison term of seven years, Smith was also sentenced to 10 years of supervised release.

“According to documents filed by the government in this case, Smith ‘friended’ the victim on MySpace and asked the victim, who he knew to be 15 years old at the time, to send him sexually explicit photos of herself,” the U.S. Attorney’s Office said. “Smith also transported the victim in interstate commerce, in this case from Ohio to Indiana, with the intent that she engage in sexual activity.”

In its sentencing memorandum, the U.S. Attorney’s Office maintained that, based on the evidence of the case, Smith “committed a minimum” of five federal felony offenses--including knowingly transporting a minor in interstate commerce with the intent to engage in sexual activity with the minor--but agreed in a pre-indictment plea to charge him with “the least serious” of the offenses.

“The government’s motivation for doing so was to prevent the victim from having to testify at trial, to conserve government resources, and because the government felt that a Guideline sentence of 10 years’ incarceration was sufficient but not greater than necessary to satisfy the purposes of sentencing,” the U.S. Attorney’s Office said.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office had sought a prison term of 10 years; Smith himself, a term of two years.

This case investigated by the Indiana Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, including the Federal Bureau of Investigation.




Posted 9/26/2013