Shalimar Man Sentenced on International Child Exploitation Charges
|U.S. Attorney’s Office December 08, 2010|
PENSACOLA, FL—Kenneth Sweeney, age 69, of Shalimar, Florida, was sentenced today in federal district court in Pensacola by Senior United States Judge Roger Vinson to 12 ½ years in prison to be followed by 10 years of supervised release for traveling abroad to engage in sexual acts with minors and possession of child pornography. A federal Indictment alleged that between October 2002 and June 2004, Sweeney traveled from Florida to multiple countries in the Middle and Far East in order to engage in illicit sexual conduct with minors. Sweeney was also charged with the possession of child pornography. Sweeney entered a guilty plea earlier this year to both charges.
Sweeney was outside the United States when the indictment was returned by a federal grand jury in Pensacola in early 2007. Working with Interpol and the State Department, the Federal Bureau of Investigation located Sweeney in the Philippines. Sweeney was detained in the Philippines on these charges and deported back to the United States. Once back in the United States in custody, law enforcement learned that Sweeney victimized children here in Florida as well.
Ms. Marsh praised the work of the Okaloosa County Sheriff’s Office and the Federal Bureau of Investigation, whose joint investigation led to Sweeney’s conviction and sentence.
This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched by the Department of Justice in May 2006, to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by 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 exploit children via the Internet, as well as to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.projectsafechildhood.gov.
This case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney David L. Goldberg.