BEAUMONT, TX – U.S. Attorney John M. Bales announced today that a 52-year-old Lufkin, Texas man has been arrested for child pornography violations in the Eastern District of Texas.
Patrick Sanders appeared before U.S. Magistrate Judge Earl Hines today on a charge of sexual exploitation of a child.
Sanders, who was director of the Lufkin Boys & Girls Club at the time of his arrest, was arrested on May 7 for allegedly taking photos of a nude male minor and posting them on his laptop computer, a previous report stated. The child was identified by police and interviewed. He admitted to posing for the photos and Sanders admitted to taking the photos, an arrest affidavit stated.
According to information presented in court, Sanders surrendered to the U.S. Marshals Service today after having been indicted on Nov. 19, 2009 and charged with child pornography violations. The indictment alleges that on May 4, 2009, Sanders persuaded a minor to pose for sexually explicit photographs.
Sanders' wife bonded him out of jail after he was booked in the U.S. Marshals Office in Beaumont.
This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice. 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.
If convicted, Sanders faces up to 15 years in federal prison. It is important to note that an indictment is merely a charge and should not be considered as evidence of either guilt or innocence.
This case is being investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Lufkin Police Department and prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Lisa G. Flournoy.
Sanders is not to be confused with the Head Start director in Nacogdoches by the same name.