A 71-year-old Wood River man was sentenced on Thursday to 10 years in prison for distribution and possession of child pornography and were it not for his age the judge said he would have sentenced him to more time.
Charlie M. Jarrett also was ordered to pay $10,000 in restitution to his victims, a $200 special assessment and was fined $17,500.
"People need to know that there are men out there like Mr. Jarrett and many others whom we have prosecuted, who join online worldwide secret networks to view, distribute and exchange some of the most shocking and sickening videos and photographs of children, toddlers and infants being raped," U.S. Attorney Stephen Wigginton said after the sentencing.
According to court documents, Jarrett was using a peer to peer file sharing network when he got caught in a federal undercover Internet investigation. FBI agents obtained a search warrant to search Jarrett's house, where they found more than 200 images of child pornography. The agents also seized his computer.
When he was interviewed by the FBI agents, Jarrett admitted that he had been downloading child pornography from the Internet for about eight years. He also admitted to distributing the images and videos containing child pornography to other individuals.
And when agents did a forensic examination of Jarrett's computer, they were able to recover nearly 27,000 image files and 60 videos that contained child pornography.
U.S. District Judge G. Patrick Murphy said, "The court just simply cannot get past these images that have been passed around between men. This is a serious crime.
Jarrett would have been given more prison time if it were not for his age, Murphy said.
The Jarrett case is part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative that was launched in 2006 by the Department of Justice to combat the growing epidemic of chid sexual exploitation and abuse. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, go to www.usdoj.gov/psc. For more information about Internet safety education, go to www.usdoj.gov/psc and click on the resources tab.
The investigation involving Jarrett was handled by the FBI's Metro East Cyber Crimes and Analysis Task Force. Assistant U.S. Attorney Ali Summers prosecuted the case.
Contact reporter Carolyn P. Smith at 618-239-2503.