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Southern District of Indiana | Newburgh Man Sentenced to 5 Years in Federal Prison for Possession of Child Sexual Abuse Material | #childpredator | #kidsaftey | #childsaftey


EVANSVILLE- Phillip Abell, 46, of Newburgh, Indiana, was sentenced to 5 years in federal prison after pleading guilty to possession of child sexual abuse material.

According to court documents, on January 23, 2020, FBI agents executed a search warrant at Abell’s home in Newburgh, Indiana. Law enforcement officers located and seized data storage discs and a custom-built desktop computer. Abell admitted that he had used a file sharing program for the last three years to search for child sexual abuse material. Abell stated he did not always look at child sexual abuse material but would sometimes get a “hankering” for it and needed to satisfy that desire. Abell also admitted to first viewing child sexual abuse material while in college. Abell stated he used a peer-to-peer file sharing network to search for the types of files he was interested in. Abell engaged in a pattern of intentionally finding, downloading, viewing, and then deleting child sexual abuse material. The materials Abell downloaded included visual depictions of the sexual abuse of prepubescent children under twelve years old.

U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Indiana, Zachary A. Myers, Herbert J. Stapleton, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Indianapolis Field Office, and Billy Bolin, Chief of Evansville Police Department made the announcement.

“Over the course of many years, the defendant trawled through the darkest corners of the internet to find images of the sexual abuse of young children,” said U.S. Attorney Zachary A. Myers. “Trafficking in these images furthers the trauma inflicted on innocent children and fuels the desires of criminals with sexual interests in children. The federal prison sentence imposed here demonstrates that our office is committed to working with the FBI and Evansville Police to protect our children from those who desire to do them harm.”

The FBI and Evansville Police Department investigated this case. The sentence was imposed by U.S. District Court Judge Richard L. Young. Judge Young also ordered that Abell be supervised by the U.S. Probation Office for 10 years following his release from federal prison. Abell must register as a sex offender wherever he lives, works, and goes to school.

U.S. Attorney Myers thanked Assistant United States Attorney Lauren M. Wheatley, who prosecuted this case.

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

If you are a victim of child sexual exploitation, please contact your local police department. Resources for victims of child exploitation can be found on our website at https://www.justice.gov/usao-sdin/project-safe-childhood



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