Sword-Wielding Palm Coast Man Pleads Guilty to Federal Charge of Receiving Child Pornography
|U.S. Attorney’s Office October 04, 2012|
JACKSONVILLE—United States Attorney Robert E. O’Neill announced today that Kamil Mezalka (21, Palm Coast) pleaded guilty to a federal charge of receiving child pornography over the Internet. Mezalka faces a mandatory minimum sentence of five years and up to 20 years in federal prison, a $250,000 fine, and a potential life term of supervised release. The plea agreement also requires Mezalka to forfeit his computers and other digital media. His sentencing date has not yet been set.
According to court documents, on March 15, 2012, an agent with the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), in Philadelphia began an undercover Internet investigation to identify persons using a file sharing program to obtain and share child pornography. Using a computer, the agent logged into this file sharing program and observed that an individual using a particular screen name was logged into the network. The agent browsed the user’s shared directory and observed that over 4,000 files were being shared therein, many of which contained titles and descriptions of child pornography and the sexual abuse of children. The investigation revealed that during the timeframe of the download sessions, the IP address being used was issued to an account registered to an individual at a particular residence in Palm Coast, Florida. Subsequent investigation revealed that Mezalka was an occupant of this residence.
On May 8, 2012, FBI agents executed a federal search warrant at Mezalka’s residence in Palm Coast. As agents made entry into the residence, Mezalka came out of a second floor bedroom, quickly turned, went back inside the same bedroom, and closed the door. Despite repeated commands to come out of the bedroom, Mezalka remained in the bedroom and proceeded to use a samurai sword in an attempt to destroy his computers and compact disks. During the search, the agents seized, among other things, a desktop computer and a laptop computer. Both of these hard drives were damaged by Mezalka’s use of the samurai sword. Subsequent forensic analysis revealed that one of the hard drives contained over 12,000 images and over 3,000 videos, of which at least 500 images and 100 videos depicted child pornography. During an interview, Mezalka admitted, among other things, to having a file sharing program on his computer that he used to download pornography, to include child pornography.
This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, in Philadelphia and Jacksonville, and the Flagler County Sheriff’s Office. It is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney D. Rodney Brown.
It is another 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.usdoj.gov/psc; for more information about Internet safety education, please visit www.usdoj.gov/psc and click on the tab “Resources.”