COLUMBUS, OH - September 10, 2015 - A federal grand jury has charged Mark W. Wolfe, 50, of Sunbury, Ohio, with distribution, receipt and possession of child pornography.
Carter M. Stewart, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Ohio, and Angela L. Byers, Special Agent in Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) announced the indictment returned yesterday.
According to court documents, undercover investigators observed files containing child pornography being shared through an IP address belonging to Wolfe. During a search warrant executed on July 31 at Wolfe’s residence, investigators discovered a laptop containing approximately 486 videos and 203 images of child pornography. The files were located in several folders on the computer under the user name “Mark.” Some of the videos showed children as young as eight-to-10 months old being sexually abused.
Further forensic analysis of the computer revealed Skype chat messages between Wolfe and several other individuals. In these conversations, Wolfe allegedly distributed child pornography files and claimed to have previously engaged in sex acts with minors and stated that his favorite age is five to ten years old.
The three-count indictment charges Wolfe with one count of distribution and one count of receipt of child pornography, each crimes punishable by at least five years up to a potential maximum of 20 years in prison, and one count of possession of child pornography, which carries a potential maximum sentence of 10 years’ imprisonment.
This case is being brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative designed to protect children from online exploitation and abuse. Led by the U.S. Attorneys Offices, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state and local resources to better locate, apprehend and prosecute individuals who exploit children, as well as identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.projectsafechildhood.gov/.
Sewart commended the investigation by the FBI Columbus Child Exploitation Task Force, which includes officers from the Westerville Police Department, Reynoldsburg Police Department, Powell Police Department and Belmont County Sheriff’s Office, as well as Assistant U.S. Attorney Heather A. Hill, who is prosecuting the case.
Charges contained in an indictment are merely allegations. All defendants are presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty in court.
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Southern District of Ohio
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