3 Tangipahoa men behind bars for online child exploitation
TANGIPAHOA PARISH, LA (NBC33) —
Three Tangipahoa Parish men were arrested Tuesday in separate incidents for exploiting children online, announced Louisiana Attorney General Buddy Caldwell’s Cyber Crime Unit (CCU).
Investigators arrested William Knight, 26, of Hammond, on charges of computer-aided solicitation of a minor and indecent behavior with a juvenile.
The investigation began after Georgia authorities contacted CCU investigators about a complaint involving an adult male from Louisiana who was allegedly engaging in inappropriate chat applications with a juvenile in which the suspect requested nude photos of the victim.
Agents were able to locate Knight as the suspect and made the arrest after a search warrant was executed on his home.
If convicted, Knight faces up to 17 years in prison.
In a separate case, investigators arrested Robert Shawn Ipavec, 42, of Ponchatoula, on a single count of distributing pornography involving juveniles.
Robert Shawn Ipavec
The arrest is the result of an undercover cyber crime investigation into the sharing of child pornography online.
Investigators were able to determine that Ipavec had made videos of child pornography available for download.
Ipavec faces up to 20 years in prison, if convicted.
Leonardo Mastascuso, 44, of Tickfaw, also faces 20 years in prison after investigators charged him with a single count of possessing pornography involving juveniles.
Forensic analysis of evidence collected during a search warrant at Mastascuso’s home showed that he possessed child pornography videos on his computer.