By James B. Kelleher
CHICAGO (Reuters) - Federal prosecutors in Indianapolis said on Monday they had broken up a worldwide child pornography distribution ring fed out of Bloomington, Indiana.
The U.S. attorney's office said David Bostic, 25, of Bloomington had pleaded guilty to charges he produced and distributed pornography primarily involving children under the age of five.
Bostic, who faced 66 counts of sexually exploiting children, trading child pornography, and possessing child pornography, will be sentenced at a later date. He faces up to 1,000 years in prison.
Joseph Hogsett, the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Indiana, characterized the case as "among the most serious cases ever prosecuted" in the district.
He said no defendant in Southern Indiana had ever faced as many counts of child pornography production as Bostic.
Some of the explicit images Bostic traded with other members of the group were of four young girls, between the ages of two months and three years, and one four-year-old boy. Prosecutors said Bostic had produced the images of those five children himself over a two-year period.
Bostic was arrested last November and formally charged in February but the indictments were sealed to avoid alerting other members of the ring.
So far, the investigation has resulted in the arrest of 20 co-conspirators, "including several individuals overseas."
Also on Monday, federal prosecutors unsealed an indictment against five other individuals, including a Briton named Domminich Shaw, allegedly involved in the "international trading of child pornography images" along with Bostic.
(Reporting by James B. Kelleher; Editing by Jerry Norton)