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Case Number: 3:20-cr-30141-SMY
Judge: Staci M. Yandle
Court: United States District Court for the Southern District of Illinois (Benton County)
Plaintiff's Attorney: United States Attorney’s Office
Description: Benton, Illinois criminal defense lawyer represented defendant charged with possession of prepubescent child pornography.
Michael M. Rapa, age 68, of Fairview Heights, Illinois, first came to the attention of law enforcement in Vancouver,
Canada, in 2015. As the result of a subsequent investigation conducted by the U.S. Department of
Homeland Security and the Fairview Heights Police Department, in 2017 Rapa was determined to be in
possession of hundreds of image and video files containing prepubescent child pornography on
various items of electronic media which lead to charges in the Southern District of Illinois.
“There is something profoundly wrong with an individual who derives sexual gratification
from seeing children being raped,” said U.S. Attorney Steven D. Weinhoeft. “Law
enforcement must confront this evil because, to paraphrase Mahatma Gandhi, a true measure of
society can be found in how it protects its most vulnerable members.”
“One of the most horrific things an individual can do is seek to harm a child,” said acting Special
Agent in Charge of the Kansas City area of operations R. Sean Fitzgerald. “I couldn’t be prouder of
the HSI special agents and analysts, in coordination with our law enforcement partners, who have
dedicated their lives to removing these predators from our community.”
This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in 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
18:2252A(a)(5)(B) - Possession of Prepubescent Child Pornography
18:2252A(a)(5)(B) - Possession of Child Pornography
Outcome: Defendant is sentenced to the Bureau of Prisons for 72 months as to each of counts 1, 2, and 3, to be served concurrently. Upon his release, Defendant shall be on supervised release for 5 years as to each of counts 1, 2, and 3. Defendant shall pay assessment of $300 and fine of $300