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Child Porn Bust made on Sanibel

A member of a prominent Sanibel Island family was arrested Tuesday after federal investigators say they found him in possession of at least 100 images of child pornography. Charles Allen Nave III, 38, remained in Lee County Jail on Wednesday following an investigation into his online activity.

An undercover agent with the Homeland Security Investigations unit began talking to Nave in January in an online chat room titled "#incest," according to a federal affidavit. The report claims the two talked about a supposed shared interest in child pornography, and Nave emailed the investigator a dozen such images. The pictures included a minor girl in bondage, according to the affidavit.

The agent tracked Nave's IP address to his employer - Big Arts community center on Sanibel Island - where Nave is the technical director. The agent also received a naked picture said to be of Nave, according to the affidavit. There are chairs in the picture similar to chairs used during Big Arts events.

On Tuesday, agents confronted Nave at Big Arts. He told agents he knew why they were there, according to the affidavit. "Nave stated that he has a pornography addiction," the affidavit states. "He knows that the addiction has led him to child pornography, and he wanted to fully cooperate so that the agents did not interfere with the operation of the Big Arts Gallery where he has been employed full time for the last 10 years."

Agents who conducted a search of Nave's computer and memory card said they found at least 100 images of child pornography, including some that matched those sent by him to the undercover agent.

Big Arts released a statement regarding Nave's arrest.

"We were made aware of an investigation pertaining to one of our employees yesterday morning," Associate Executive Director Jessica Baxter said in an email Wednesday. "We are cooperating with the authorities in their investigation."

Baxter did not answer when asked if Nave would be terminated.

Nave is the third generation of a family deeply involved with the Sanibel Island community. His grandfather, Charles Nave Sr., served with the Sanibel Fire and Rescue District for 50 years, working his way through the ranks to become fire chief, according to district administrator Mary Hickey.

The defendant's father, Charles Nave Jr., is honored on the Sanibel city website as a member of the island community since its incorporation in 1974. Charles Nave Jr. attended the one-room school house on the island, was a volunteer firefighter and now attends Sanibel Community Church, according to the website.

Nave will be represented by attorney Russell Rosenthal with the federal public defender's office. Rosenthal declined comment Wednesday.

Nave faces a mandatory minimum of 5 years, up to a maximum of 20 years in federal on the charge of distributing child pornography.

There was no answer at phone numbers listed for the Nave family.

Article by: Marisa Kendall, www.news-press.com

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