NEW ORLEANS - Steven L. Johnson, 56, of Covington, La., and Michael Larrieu, 18, of Gretna, La., were indicted today by a federal grand jury for crimes involving the sexual exploitation of children, U.S. Attorney Jim Letten announced today.
According to today's indictment, Johnson knowingly received images of child pornography over the Internet and was arrested after FBI agents executed a federal search warrant on his Covington residence on March 12, 2007. Johnson is charged with possessing both computer files and hardware that allegedly contained images of child pornography and images from his home computer. An arrest warrant was signed by a U.S. District Magistrate Judge and the FBI is actively looking for Johnson.
Michael Larrieu, who was also indicted today, is charged with one count of possession of child pornography. According to the indictment, during the execution of a federal search warrant by FBI agents on Oct. 11, 2006, Larrieu was found in possession of computers and other computer media that allegedly contained visual depictions of minors engaging in sexually explicit conduct.
Jerry Lucas, 41, of New Orleans and James Rutkofske, 40, formerly of New Orleans, were also charged recently with federal crimes involving the sexual exploitation of children and the proliferation of child pornography.
Lucas, who was indicted on Feb. 22, 2007 for production and possession of child pornography, was arrested by FBI agents on Feb. 15, 2007. Lucas remains in federal custody awaiting trial on April 23, 2007.
On March 6, 2007, James Rutkofske pled guilty to possession of child pornography. He is scheduled to be sentenced on June 5, 2007 by U.S. District Judge Jay C. Zainey. Rutkofske was charged after he was found in possession of child pornography by FBI agents who responded to a tip from a local computer store. FBI agents subsequently obtained federal search warrants and seized Rutkofske's computer and other computer media that was found to contain images depicting the sexual exploitation of minors.
If convicted, Johnson faces a mandatory minimum sentence of five years in prison and a maximum of 20 years in prison on the receipt of child pornography charge. Lucas faces a mandatory minimum sentence of 15 years in federal prison. Johnson, Larrieu, Lucas, and Rutkofske can be sentenced to a term of imprisonment of up to 10 years in prison on the possession of child pornography counts. All four defendants face a life term of supervised release, sex offender registration, and are required to provide DNA samples to authorities.