An O’Fallon man will serve 12 years in federal prison for distributing and receiving child pornography.
Hamza L. Nijmeh, 32, was sentenced Thursday by U.S. District Court Judge David Herndon. Nijmeh will also serve 10 years of supervised release after his time in prison, and must pay $6,500 in restitution to the three victims in the child pornography images, according to a media release from the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Illinois.
Law enforcement officials in Albuquerque, New Mexico, received a tip from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children about a man trading child porn online, according to the release. Investigations showed the man, Nijmeh, was trading child porn with around 50 people across the U.S. through group chats on a mobile messaging app.
The Fairview Heights FBI found that Nijmeh received a child pornography image Aug. 14, 2015, on his cell phone and distributed it the next day. A search of his phone found 483 image files and 281 videos containing child pornography.
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This case was brought as a part of Project Safe Childhood, an initiative to combat child sexual exploitation and abuse.