BRUNSWICK, GA: A Camden County man snagged in a child sex-trafficking sting will spend more than five years in federal prison.
Charles Barreras, 49, of Kingsland, Ga., was sentenced to 62 months in federal prison by U.S. District Court Judge Lisa Godbey Wood after pleading guilty to Attempted Coercion and Enticement, said Bobby L. Christine, U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Georgia. After completion of his prison term, Barreras will be required to serve 10 years of supervised release and to register as a sex offender.
There is no parole in the federal system.
“As predators attempt to use cyberspace to contact children for evil intentions, our law enforcement partners will remain vigilant in identifying and stopping pedophiles like Barreras,” said U.S. Attorney Christine. “Any adult who intends to contact children for illicit purposes should live in fear that their crimes will be uncovered – and like Barreras, they will go to prison.”
Barreras is a lieutenant commander in the U.S. Navy, stationed at Submarine Base Kings Bay in Kingsland. He and eight other men were indicted in July 2019 as a result of Operation Do You Know Your Neighbor, coordinated by the Georgia Bureau of Investigation’s Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force.
Three of the remaining defendants in the operation have been sentenced to federal prison, while others await sentencing after entering guilty pleas, or are awaiting trial.
“The sentences that continue to be handed down as a result of this successful multiagency operation should serve as a stern warning for sexual predators who target children where Department of the Navy personnel live and work,” said NCIS Southeast Field Office Special Agent in Charge Tom Cannizzo. “NCIS and our state and local partners are dedicated to working together to keep our communities safe for children.”
“This sentence demonstrates that no matter who you are, even a ranking official in the armed forces, you will be held accountable for preying on children,” said GBI Director Vic Reynolds. “We value our law enforcement partnerships to be able to work together in these type operations to catch the criminals who seek to harm one of our most vulnerable populations.”
The sting was set up by the Naval Criminal Investigative Service and the GBI’s Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force for the purpose of identifying adults who were seeking out children for indecent purposes. Other agencies participating in the investigation included the Camden County Sheriff’s Office, the Kingsland Police Department, the Effingham County Sheriff’s Office and the Savannah Police Department.
This case was prosecuted for the United States by Assistant U.S. Attorney Marcela Mateo and Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Katelyn Semales.