Former Carrollton, Texas Man Who Worked as a Long-Haul Truck Driver Faces Up to 20 Years in Federal Prison on Child Pornography Conviction
DALLAS—A 35-year-old long haul truck driver who most recently resided in Carrollton, Texas, appeared in federal court this morning and pleaded guilty to one count of transportation of child pornography, announced U.S. Attorney Sarah R. Saldaña of the Northern District of Texas.
James Marshall Thomas, who has been in federal custody since his arrest in September 2014, faces a statutory maximum sentence of not less than five years and up to 20 years in federal prison, a $250,000 fine and a lifetime of supervised release. He is scheduled to be sentenced on March 13, 2014, before Chief U.S. District Judge Sidney A. Fitzwater.
According to documents filed in the case, the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children received a Cybertip in June 2012 that an individual, later identified as Thomas, had e-mailed images of child pornography to another specific e-mail address. While a federal search warrant was being drafted, FBI special agents discovered that he had moved out of his apartment in Carrollton and that he worked as a cross-country truck driver.
Approximately two years later, FBI special agents located Thomas at a freight delivery destination. He gave them permission to search his laptop computer where agents discovered that he had responded to an advertisement on Craigslist by stating, in part, “pedo perv here.” They also discovered child pornography on the laptop and seized it, as well as a thumb drive.
A forensic analysis revealed that Thomas had searched for child pornography using various search terms indicative of raping young boys. In addition, Skype artifacts were also located that included chat logs of other like-minded individuals discussing the rape of young boys. Thomas also used Skype to receive and transport files of child pornography on multiple occasions. The analysis further revealed that Thomas had accessed several child pornography videos of prepubescent children. In all, approximately 400 images and 28 videos of child pornography, including sadistic acts involving minors, were located on his computer and thumb drive.
The case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative, which was launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice, to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by U.S. Attorney’s Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state and local resources to better locate, apprehend and prosecute individuals, who sexually exploit children, and identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit http://www.justice.gov/psc/. For more information about Internet safety education, please visit http://www.justice.gov/psc/ and click on the tab “resources.”
The FBI is investigating. Assistant U.S. Attorney Camille Sparks is prosecuting.