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Turlock man prison bound for child pornography

A Turlock man has been convicted of trafficking in child pornography that included images of children being tortured.

Edward Paul Cragg, 38, was found guilty on one count of receipt and distribution of child pornography, according to the U.S. District Attorney’s Office.

On Tuesday, Chief U.S. District Judge Lawrence J. O’Neill sentenced Cragg to 20 years in prison for the felony offense. The sentence will be followed by 10 years of supervised release during which Cragg will be required to register as a sex offender, and his access to minors, computers, and the internet will be restricted. Cragg was also ordered to pay $3,000 to $5,000 in restitution to multiple victims whose images Cragg obtained and made available to others.

Evidence introduced at trial established that from approximately Aug. 1, 2015, through March 1, 2016, Cragg used a file-sharing program to search for and save more than 130 child pornography videos. Some of the videos depicted images of infants or toddlers being subjected to sadistic or masochistic abuse.

In sentencing Cragg, Judge O’Neill found that Cragg had completely failed to acknowledge what he had done was wrong or criminal and described the defendant’s conduct as “beyond destructive” to the victims whose images were involved in the offense.

This case was the result of an investigation by the Turlock Police Department with assistance from the Ceres Police Department and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorneys David Gappa and Ross Pearson prosecuted the 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 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 those who sexually exploit children, and to identify and rescue victims.