Previously convicted sex offender sentenced to 15 years in federal prison for receiving and possessing child pornography

A previously convicted sex offender was sentenced to 15 years in prison for possession of child pornography.

PHOENIX – A previously convicted sex offender was sentenced earlier this month to 15 years in federal prison after pleading guilty in June to receiving and possessing child pornography with a prior conviction, a class B felony offense.

Dennis Hodgdon, 48, was sentenced Nov. 13 by U.S. District Judge John J. Tuchi. Once he completes the prison sentence, Hodgdon will be on supervised release for the rest of his life.

The case against Hodgdon began with a nationwide investigation into a forum on the internet where U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) special agents determined numerous individuals visited, downloaded and uploaded child pornography. The forum appeared to have several sections for offenders to visit. On Jan. 7, 2016, special agents were able to locate Hodgdon’s internet protocol address after he had downloaded a video depicting sexual exploitation of children.

“The outcome of this case should serve as a sobering warning to those who brazenly engage in further victimizing children by viewing child pornography,” said Scott Brown, special agent in charge of HSI Phoenix. “HSI will continue to work tirelessly to identify these dangerous offenders and bring them to justice. Our efforts are vital to protecting our nation’s most vulnerable population from repeat sexual predators who troll the internet looking for additional victims.”
According to court documents, at the time of his arrest March 3, at his mother’s home in Buckeye, Hodgdon was already a registered sex offender with two convictions from North Carolina; one for indecent liberties with a child and the second for sexual exploitation of a minor. HSI special agents located a tablet with approximately 23,000 child pornography and child erotica images. Further, on a separate device, special agents discovered 180 videos, with most of the content being sex acts with prepubescent boys. Hodgdon was taken into custody in Buckeye.
HSI’s participation, in this case, was part of Operation Predator, an international HSI initiative to protect children from sexual predators. Since the launch of Operation Predator in 2003, HSI has arrested more than 16,000 individuals for crimes against children, including the production and distribution of online child pornography, traveling overseas for sex with minors, and sex trafficking of children. In the fiscal year 2016, more than 2,600 child predators were arrested by HSI special agents under this initiative and more than 800 victims identified or rescued.

HSI encourages the public to report suspected child predators and any suspicious activity through its toll – free Tip Line at 1 – 866 – DHS – 2 – ICE or by completing its online tip form. Both are staffed around the clock by investigators. From outside the U.S. and Canada, callers should dial 802 – 872 – 6199. Hearing impaired users can call TTY 802 – 872 – 6196.

Suspected child sexual exploitation or missing children may be reported to the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children, an Operation Predator partner, via its toll – free 24 – hour hotline, 1 – 800 – THE – LOST.
For additional information about wanted suspected child predators, download HSI’s Operation Predator smartphone app or visit the online suspect alerts page. HSI is a founding member of the Virtual Global Taskforce, an international alliance of law enforcement agencies and private industry sector partners working together to prevent and deter online child sexual abuse.

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