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Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Alta Vista Man Sentenced for Possessing Child Pornography

A man who possessed images of child pornography on his computer was sentenced on May 9, 2011, to more than six years in federal prison.

Darrin Joseph Meirick, age 32, from Alta Vista, Iowa, received the prison term after a November 4, 2010, guilty plea to two counts of possessing child pornography.

In a plea agreement, Meirick admitted that, on April 4, 2008 and September 23, 2008, he possessed at least 150 computer images of minors engaged in sexually explicit conduct. The images included prepubescent minors engaged in sadistic sexual conduct.

Meirick was sentenced in Cedar Rapids by United States District Court Chief Judge Linda R. Reade. Meirick was sentenced to 78 months’ imprisonment to be followed by 10 years of supervised release. A special assessment of $100 was imposed. There is no parole in the federal system. Meirick must also register as a sex offender.

Meirick is being held in the United States Marshals custody until he can be transported to a federal prison.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Peter Deegan and was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Chickasaw County, Iowa, Sheriff’s 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 United States Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division's Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section (CEOS), 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.projectsafechildhood.gov.

Court file information is available at https://ecf.iand.uscourts.gov/cgi-bin/login.pl. The case file number is 10-2036 LRR.

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