Hephzibah Man Sentenced to 30 Years for Sexually Exploiting a Minor
AUGUSTA, GA—Rahmad Ali James, 37, of Hephzibah, Georgia, was sentenced last week by United States District Court J. Randal Hall to 30 years in prison, followed by supervised release for 10 years, for the Sexual Exploitation of a Minor through the production of child pornography. James pled guilty to the charge in May 2014.
United States Attorney Edward Tarver said, “The protection of our children is, and should be, a priority to which the Department of Justice takes swift and aggressive enforcement action. This defendant exploited a child entrusted to his care by molesting her and photographing her, and then posting those images on the Internet in violation of numerous federal laws. Lengthy sentences like the one imposed here help protect our children from predatory acts, and serve to deter others from engaging in similar conduct.”
J. Britt Johnson, Special Agent in Charge, FBI Atlanta Field Office, stated: “The lengthy prison sentence handed down today reflects the serious nature of the crimes committed in this case. The FBI will continue to provide extensive investigative resources in getting such child predators as Rahmad James off of our streets.”
Evidence presented during the guilty plea and sentencing hearings revealed that James, while living in the Atlanta area, molested a girl who lived in the same house where he was staying. The molestation occurred when the girl was between the ages of 8 and 15. James photographed the molestation, and after returning to Hephzibah, uploaded those and other child pornography images onto an international website in order to receive similar-type images from others. After executing a federal search warrant at James’s Hephzibah residence in February 2014, officers and agents located a large collection of child pornography on various forms of computer media belonging to James. James was immediately arrested, and was thereafter indicted and charged with four counts involving the production of child pornography, and five counts of distributing child pornography. He has remained in custody since February 2014.
The arrest in this case was accomplished through the efforts of members of the FBI’s Metro Atlanta Child Exploitation Task Force and its Computer Crime Child Exploitation Task Force (MATCH/CCCX) made up of agents and officers of the FBI, Georgia Bureau of Investigation, Richmond County Sheriff’s Office and Columbia County Sheriff’s office. This case was prosecuted as part of Project Safe Childhood, which is a nationwide U.S. Department of Justice initiative designed to protect children from online exploitation and abuse. Led by the United States Attorney’s Offices, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources to better locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who exploit children via the Internet, as well as to identify and rescue victims.
Assistant United States Attorney Nancy Greenwood, Deputy Criminal Chief in the Augusta U.S. Attorney’s Branch Office and Project Safe Childhood Coordinator, prosecuted the case on behalf of the United States. For additional information, please contact First Assistant United States Attorney James D. Durham at (912) 201-2547.