Columbia man pleads guilty to distributing child pornography

Monday, November 30, 2009 | 7:35 p.m. CST

JEFFERSON CITY — James Lee Melvin, 57, of Columbia pleaded guilty in federal court Monday to a charge of distributing child pornography, according to U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Missouri Matt J. Whitworth.

Whitworth said Melvin admitted to downloading child pornography and using a file-sharing program to distribute it. Investigators found about 300 images of child pornography during a forensic examination of Melvin's computer, Whitworth stated in a news release.

Whitworth said Melvin was charged in a federal indictment March 2.

If convicted, he faces a sentence of five to 20 years in a federal prison without parole, plus a fine up to $250,000, according to Whitworth. A sentencing hearing has yet to be scheduled.

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