Anne Arundel County Woman Sentenced to Seven Years in Prison for Conspiracy to Distribute and Receive Child Pornography
BALTIMORE, MD—U.S. District Judge Marvin J. Garbis sentenced Erin Elizabeth Mali, age 32, of Arnold, Maryland, today to seven years in prison followed by a lifetime of supervised release for conspiracy to distribute and receive child pornography, and for distribution of child pornography. Judge Garbis ordered that upon her release from prison, Mali must register as a sex offender in the place where she resides, where she is an employee, and where she is a student, under the Sex Offender Registration and Notification Act (SORNA).
The sentence was announced by United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein; Special Agent in Charge Stephen E. Vogt of the Federal Bureau of Investigation; and Anne Arundel County Police Chief Tim Altomare.
According to her plea agreement and testimony at the trial of co-defendant Howard James Clem IV, Mali met Clem in a mobile social networking and dating application in September 2012. Many of the communications exchanged by Mali and Clem, and images Mali sent to Clem, focused on graphic sexual conduct involving prepubescent minors. Mali sent Clem images depicting prepubescent minors engaged in sexually explicit conduct, including a prepubescent female whom Mali and Clem identified by name.
On June 3, 2013, the social networking and dating application and website captured the images and communications exchanged by Mali and Clem, including child pornography, which caused a “cybertip” to be generated to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. An investigation by the Anne Arundel County Police Department resulted in a search warrant being executed at Mali’s and Clem’s residences and on their social networking accounts. Law enforcement recovered the SD card on which many of the images Mali distributed to Clem were stored. In addition, law enforcement recovered the images and communications Mali and Clem exchanged from searches of their mobile social networking and dating application. Mali admitted that she knew the minors depicted in the images were all under 16 years old.
On January 29, 2015, Howard James Clem IV, a/k/a “Jamie,” age 33, of Pasadena, Maryland, was convicted after a six-day trial for conspiracy to distribute and receive child pornography, and for receipt and possession of child pornography. Upon his conviction, Judge Garbis ordered that Clem be immediately taken into custody. Clem faces a minimum mandatory sentence of five years in prison and a maximum of 20 years in prison for conspiracy to distribute and receive child pornography and for each of two counts of receipt of child pornography; and a maximum of 20 years in prison for possession of child pornography, each followed by up to lifetime of supervised release. Judge Garbis has scheduled sentencing for Clem on May 27, 2015 at 10:00 a.m.
This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by the United States Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources to locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who sexually exploit children, and to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.justice.gov/psc. For more information about Internet safety education, please visit www.justice.gov/psc and click on the “resources” tab on the left of the page.
United States Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein commended the FBI and Anne Arundel County Police Department for their work in the investigation. Mr. Rosenstein thanked Assistant U.S. Attorneys Judson T. Mihok and Leo J. Wise, who prosecuted the case.