Robert Merz – Repeat Sex Offender – Busted for Child Porn Ring

Merz had two prior convictions for the molestation of two young girls on separate occasions.


A Philadelphia man was convicted yesterday on charges that he advertised child pornography on the Internet, the first such case in the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, U.S. Attorney Laurie Magid said.

Robert Merz, 45, was convicted of advertising, receiving, transporting, and possessing child pornography, Magid said in a news release.

According to Magid, Merz operated a child-pornography message board titled “My Kingdom.” He placed a notice and advertisement on the board explaining the forum’s rules and purpose and the general content of the pictures of the children to be posted. The online group had members from around the world chosen by Merz, Magid said.

According to court records, Merz is “a self-admitted pedophile” and spent about a decade in prison for convictions related to molestation.

investigators testified at trial that Merz created and administered an online group that was dedicated to trading images and videos depicting the sexual abuse of minors. The online group had members from around the world who were handpicked by Merz. The group could only be accessed via a password and was established not only to trade images and videos of minors, but also so members could talk about their common sexual interest in children.

“Mr. Merz, simply by using the Internet, collected and distributed hundreds of thousands of images and videos of some of the most horrific and unimaginable criminal acts committed against children,” said Assistant Attorney General of the Criminal Division Lanny A. Breuer. “These images aren’t just abstract representations. They are depictions of real crimes committed against those who are most deserving or our protection.”

The identification of this online group resulted from Operation “Joint Hammer,” the U.S. component of “Operation Koala,” an ongoing global operation targeting transnational rings of child pornographers that was initiated by Europol and Eurojust, and involved 28 countries.

Testimony at Merz’s trial revealed that this conviction was not his first related to child exploitation. Pennsylvania law enforcement established that Merz had two prior convictions for the molestation of two young girls on separate occasions.

Sentencing has been set for July 13, 2009. At sentencing, Merz will face a mandatory minimum of 35 years and up to life in prison as well as the possibility of a lifetime period of supervised release if he does not receive a life sentence. He will also face a fine up to $250,000.

“25% of all sex offenders re-offend within 15 years”
………Sarah Tofte

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