PHILADELPHIA – A 33-year-old Newark, Del., man had his initial appearance in federal court March 25 on child exploitation related charges after being indicted earlier this month.
The charges follow an investigation by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), the Montgomery County District Attorney’s Office and the Limerick Township Police Department.
Christopher Steele, aka Mike Dozor was indicted March 6 on charges of use of interstate commerce facility to entice a minor to engage in sexual conduct, interstate travel with intent to engage in illicit sexual conduct with a minor and receipt of child pornography. If convicted, Steele faces at least 10 years with a maximum sentence of life in prison.
According to the indictment, Steele persuaded, via the Internet, a minor boy to engage in sexual activity and then traveled from Delaware to Pennsylvania for the purpose of engaging in illicit sexual conduct with that minor. It is further alleged that Steele received a visual depiction showing a minor engaged in sexually explicit conduct.
This investigation was conducted under HSI’s Operation Predator, an international initiative to protect children from sexual predators. Since the launch of Operation Predator in 2003, HSI has arrested more than 10,000 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 fiscal year 2013, more than 2,000 individuals were arrested by HSI special agents under this initiative.
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. 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.
HSI is a founding member and current chair 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.
The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Michelle Rotella in the Eastern District of Pennsylvania.