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Orange Park man given 7½ years for child porn

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Charles Eugene Mears, 56, of Orange Park, was sentenced to seven years and six months in federal prison for receiving child pornography over the Internet.

United States District Judge Brian Davis also ordered Mears to serve a 10-year term of supervised release, register as a sex offender, and pay $3,000 in restitution to one of the victims.

According to court documents, a Florida Department of Law Enforcement agent in Jacksonville began an undercover investigation to identify individuals in northeast Florida who were trading images and videos of child pornography over the Internet. The agent identified a computer that was hosting images of child pornography using a file sharing program and was able to download several of the files. Further investigation traced the host computer to Mears's home. 

Agents served a federal search warrant at Mears's residence and seized several computers and other electronic media. Forensic analyses of Mears's laptop revealed that it contained at least 211 videos depicting child pornography, including at least one video depicting the sexual abuse of a toddler.

This case was investigated by the FDLE, the FBI and the Clay County Sheriff's Office.