GREENBELT, Md. (July 7, 2017)—On July 6, 2017, U.S. District Judge George J. Hazel sentenced Andre Barbins, age 46, formerly of Solomons, Maryland, to 72 months in prison, followed by 15 years of supervised release, for receipt of child pornography. Barbins pled guilty to the charge on January 26, 2017.
The sentence was announced by Acting United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Stephen M. Schenning; Special Agent in Charge Andre R. Watson of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI); Colonel William M. Pallozzi, Superintendent of the Maryland State Police; and Sheriff David Clague of the Knox County (Illinois) Sheriff’s Department.
According to his plea agreement, Barbins used experienceproject.com, a social media application accessible through the internet, to chat with and exchange pictures with a 12-year-old victim located in Illinois. The victim told Barbins directly that she was only 12 years old, nevertheless, Barbins continued chatting and exchanging pictures with the victim over the course of five days. Barbins persuaded the victim to send him pictures containing child pornography. Barbins also sent pornographic pictures of himself to the child. When a search warrant was executed at Barbins’ residence in Solomons, Maryland, officers located several items of furniture that were visible in the photographs that Barbins sent to the victim.
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 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.justice.gov/psc. For more information about internet safety education, please visit www.justice.gov/psc and click on the “resources” tab on the left of the page.
Acting United States Attorney Stephen M. Schenning commended HSI, the Maryland State Police, and the Knox County Sheriff’s Office for their work in the investigation. Mr. Schenning thanked Assistant United States Attorney Joseph R. Baldwin, who prosecuted the case.