Plano man faces new child porn sentence

Special to The News

PLANO – A 27-year-old Plano man has been found guilty of child pornography violations in the Eastern District of Texas, U.S. Attorney Joseph D. Brown said Tuesday.

Hayden Ricks was found guilty of possession of child pornography on Monday following a bench trial before U.S. District Judge Marcia A. Crone.

On Sep. 13, 2018, Ricks reported to his Collin County Community Supervision and Correction Department Officer. Ricks was subject to supervision due to a 2013 conviction for possession of child pornography in Collin County, for which he received deferred adjudication. On that date, Ricks’s supervising officer asked to see his cell phone. Reviewing the device, the supervising officer saw a number of images of suspected child pornography.

The officer contacted the Collin County Sheriff’s Office, Child Exploitation Unit, who met up with Ricks and an FBI special agent at the Collin County courthouse. In a consensual, recorded interview, Ricks ultimately admitted that he had accessed particular websites that included individuals engaged in sexual acts, including images of child pornography.

The officers and agent then located child pornography images on Ricks’ cell phone. They also located more than 1,000 pages of internet history that corroborated Ricks’ statements about the locations where he obtained child pornography.

Under federal statutes, Ricks faces a minimum of 10 years and up to 20 years in federal prison at sentencing. A sentencing hearing will be scheduled after the completion of a presentence investigation by the U.S. Probation Office.

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 U.S. Attorneys’ Offices and the Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, 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. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.justice.gov/psc.

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