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'Boy Lover' Sting in Skokie Leads To Child Pornography, Molestation Charges

A total of eight self-identified "boy lovers" attended a sting operation in Skokie; their convictions were announced today. One of the defendants admitted to molesting a 1-year-old boy, authorities said.

A total of eight self-identified "boy lovers" have been convicted after meeting several underage males in a hotel in Skokie, federal officials announced today.

The incident happened three years ago, with a Crest Hill man sentenced to 120 years in prison. Six of the eight defendants pleaded guilty and three of them cooperated against others, while the Crest Hill man and a Missouri defendant were convicted after separate trials, authorities said. 

“The sentences in these cases reflect the stark reality that defendants who prey upon children by sexually exploiting or abusing them will be punished severely,” said Gary S. Shapiro, acting United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois.         

The following defendants have been charged:

Mark McGill, 27, of Crest Hill, was sentenced to nine years in prison, followed by 20 years’ supervised release, on Oct. 9.  McGill was convicted of possessing and distributing child pornography after a trial in March of this year.  Evidence at McGill’s trial showed that he had attended at least one party with other “boy lovers,” authorities said.  In Aug. 2009, McGill gave a cooperating defendant a thumb drive containing approximately 3,500 images and nearly 60 videos containing child pornography, federal officials said.

Jose Garcia, 25, of Schererville, Ind., sentenced to 33 years in prison, followed by lifetime supervised release, on July 23.  Garcia, who cooperated, pleaded guilty to producing, possessing, and distributing child pornography;

Jacob Elliott, 32, of Matteson, sentenced to 20 years in prison, followed by 10 years’ supervised release, by U.S. District Judge John Grady on July 18.  Elliott, who cooperated, pleaded guilty to producing and possessing child pornography;

Corey Stinefast, 30, of Kenosha, Wis., was sentenced to 18 years in prison, followed by lifetime supervised release, on June 13.  Stinefast pleaded guilty to possessing and distributing child pornography, and he was found to have amassed a collection of more than 191,000 images of child pornography, officials said.

Neal Maschke, 42, of Chicago, was sentenced to nine years in prison, followed by five years’ supervised release, in Oct. 2010.  Maschke pleaded guilty to possessing child pornography.

Donald Peppers, 38, of Hoffman Estates, sentenced to 27 years in prison, followed by lifetime supervised release, in Dec. 2010.  Peppers, who cooperated, pleaded guilty to producing, transporting, and possessing child pornography, including an admission that he had produced a video of himself sexually molesting a 1-year-old child, officials said.  Peppers’ arrest and subsequent cooperation touched off the investigation that resulted in the other prosecutions.

Garcia and Maschke were arrested when they showed-up for what they believed was going to be a “boy lovers” party at a Skokie hotel in Sept. 2009, authorities said.  However, the hotel "party" was in fact a sting operation, according to officials.

McGill and Stinefast were arrested a short time later.  Two other defendants, Michael Martin and Matthew Klopfenstine, were convicted in Federal Courts in St. Louis and Kansas City, respectively, based on evidence gathered during this investigation.  Martin was sentenced last year to 120 years in prison for producing child pornography, and Klopfenstine was sentenced recently to 15 years and eight months for producing child pornography.

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Conceal Carry October 15, 2012 at 10:01 PM
DEATH PENALTY. .. don't waste my tax dollars housing and feeding them.
Mary Jones October 15, 2012 at 10:09 PM
Every single one of these guys should be locked up for life, without parole...ever! I doubt they will ever change and they are a danger to society. The fact that Peppers admitted to molesting a 1 yr old baby and only getting 27 years is a crime in itself. We need prisons that are just for these types of animals. With no tv, college, or any luxuries. They should be in a 4x4 room with a cot, toilet and a bible for reading. They should be forced to do hard labor to pay back for their incarceration until they die. If they try to escape they should be shot, period. I feel incredibly sorry for their victims, the victim's family and their own family for having to endure being related to them. I will pray for them all, these animals included.
Terri Madison October 15, 2012 at 11:42 PM
And just WHICH hotel in Skokie?? Where is THEIR liability for allowing this type of activity to go on unreported? Don't THEY have a responsibility to do so, as teachers, doctors, and others who are required by law to report CHILD ABUSE??
George Slefo October 16, 2012 at 12:48 AM
@ Terri The hotel meetup was a sting operation and we originally reported, " ... when they showed-up for what they believed was going to be a “boy lovers” party at a Skokie hotel in Sept. 2009, authorities said." However, after reading your comment I can see how someone could get confused. Thank you for pointing this out, we've added clarification to the article and it now reflects your comment. Best, George

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