James Gorden Meek, a former investigative producer and journalist for ABC News, has been arrested and charged on suspicion of transportation of child pornography.
The Department of Justice announced the 53-year-old from Arlington, Virginia, was in taken into custody Tuesday night. If convicted, Meeks will receive a mandatory minimum of five years in prison and a maximum of 20, according to a report on www.hollywoodreporter.com.
The arrest follows an investigation led by the FBI Washington Field Office’s Child Exploitation and Human Trafficking Task Force, which followed a March 11, 2021 tip from Dropbox to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. The tip indicated that child pornography had allegedly been uploaded to an account with a username and IP addresses associated with James Meek on March 10.
The FBI obtained a search warrant for Meek’s Virigina home and searched it on April 27, 2022, seizing several devices, including a personal phone and external hard drive, that allegedly contain evidence related to his charge.
Among that evidence were images “depicting children engaged in sexually explicit conduct, and multiple chat conversations with users engaged in sexually explicit conversations where the participants expressed enthusiasm for the sexual abuse of children,” the Justice Department said in their statement Wednesday. A username on a messaging platform allegedly associated with the former journalist both “received and distributed child sexual abuse materials,” according to court documents, with “significant evidence that Meek has engaged directly, and attempted to engage, with minors online on platforms and applications.”
Meeks, who had worked on ABC’s Nightline and 20/20 was an Emmy-nominated journalist that had most recently worked on 3212 Un-Redacted, a Hulu documentary about four U.S. Special Forces soldiers’ deaths in Africa. He resigned from his position at ABC News the day his home was raided by the FBI.