SACRAMENTO, Calif. — A federal grand jury returned a two-count indictment today against Kevin Blaine Cline, 46, of Fairfield, charging him with attempted online coercion of a child and distribution of child pornography, U.S. Attorney McGregor W. Scott announced.
According to the criminal complaint, on Nov. 1, an undercover agent observed Cline’s post on the social media platform called Whisper that said he was “Looking for dad’s (sic) who love their daughters near me I…… Have a question.” The notation at the bottom of Cline’s post said, “Freaky Sexual Desires.” During a two-day conversation on Whisper with the undercover agent, Cline sent two images of child pornography to the agent and attempted to arrange a meeting with a 7‑year-old girl in order to sexually molest her.
Cline then drove from Fairfield to Pleasant Hill to meet up with the intended victim. When Cline arrived, he was placed under arrest.
This case is the product of an investigation by the Silicon Valley Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force (SVICAC) a federally and state-funded task force with agents from federal, state, and local agencies that investigates online child exploitation crimes, including child pornography, enticement, and sex trafficking. The Contra Costa District Attorney’s Office and Homeland Security Investigations conducted the investigation as part of the SVIAC. Assistant U.S. Attorney Christina McCall is prosecuting the case.
If convicted of attempted online coercion, Cline faces a mandatory minimum penalty of 10 years in prison and a maximum statutory penalty of life in prison and a $250,000 fine. Any sentence, however, would be determined at the discretion of the court after consideration of any applicable statutory factors and the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, which take into account a number of variables. The charges are only allegations; the defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.
This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in May 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 Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources to locate, apprehend, and prosecute those who sexually exploit children, and to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.usdoj.gov/psc. Click on the “resources” tab for information about internet safety education.