Sacramento, California - A Northern California man was sentenced Tuesday to eight years in prison for receiving child pornography, following a U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI)-led investigation.
Jason B. Scarcello, 45, of Anderson, appeared before U.S. District Judge Troy Nunley. According to court documents, between April and June 2012, Scarcello used a file-sharing program to download multiple movies depicting the sexual exploitation of children. Scarcello was arrested July 25, 2012, after agents executed a federal search warrant at his residence and discovered CDs and DVDs containing sexually explicit images and videos of children.
According to the search warrant affidavit, suspicions about Scarcello first arose after investigators determined he had engaged in computer chats with a previously charged suspect in Kansas. From August 2010 through March 2012, Scarcello and the Kansas man discussed the abuse of child victims in computer chats.
The Scarcello case is part of an ongoing HSI-led investigation that originated in Boston. In 2010, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Massachusetts and HSI Boston arrested and convicted Robert Diduca on child pornography production charges. Forensic analysis of Diduca’s computer led investigators to the Netherlands where a Dutch national was arrested and charged with production, distribution, and possession of child pornography, as well as the sexual assault of 87 minors. Since that time, a worldwide network of offenders has been, and continues to be, unraveled, including today’s defendant. Defendants and victims continue to be identified around the world. To date, more than 140 children have been rescued and 43 perpetrators arrested worldwide as a result.
“The sexual exploitation of children is wrong and will not be tolerated,” said Tatum King, deputy special agent in charge of HSI San Francisco. “Together with our law enforcement partners, Homeland Security Investigations will bring to justice anyone involved in such heinous acts.”
This probe was conducted under the auspices of the Department of Justice’s Project Safe Childhood and HSI’s Operation Predator, two initiatives aimed at locating, arresting and prosecuting individuals who sexually exploit children and rescuing their victims.
Since the launch of Operation Predator in 2003, HSI has arrested more than 12,000 individuals for crimes against children, including the production and distribution of online child pornography, traveling overseas for sex with minors, and sex trafficking of children.
HSI encourages the public to report suspected child predators and any suspicious activity through its toll-free Tip Line at 1-866-DHS-2-ICE or by completing its online tip form. Both are staffed around the clock by investigators. Suspected child sexual exploitation or missing children may be reported to the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children, an Operation Predator partner, via its toll-free 24-hour hotline, 1-800-THE-LOST. For additional information about wanted suspected child predators, download HSI’s Operation Predator smartphone app or visit the online suspect alerts page.
For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.usdoj.gov/psc. Click on the “resources” tab for information about Internet safety education.