Posted at: 04/04/2013 4:05 PM
Updated at: 04/04/2013 6:22 PM
By: Nikki Ibarra, KOB Eyewitness News 4 and KOB.com Staff
Photo: Derek Schwartzrock
An Albuquerque-area children’s minister has been arrested on federal child pornography charges.
Homeland Security Investigations in connection with State Police arrested Derek Schwartzrock Wednesday.
He’s in federal custody and is expected to make an initial appearance in court Friday.
Schwartzrock is accused of receiving and possessing images of minors engaged in sexually explicit acts, according to a press released from the state district U.S. Attorney’s Office.
Schwartzrock worked as a children’s minister at Evangel Christian Center since May of 2009. The church is located on Montgomery Boulevard in the Northeast Heights.
The church said it did two background checks on Schwartzrock before he was hired. They wrote in a statement, “No red flags were raised. Also, we take the safety of our children seriously.”
Homeland Security began looking at Schwartzrock in March after they found out someone in Albuquerque was logging onto a website that contained sexually explicit images of kids. Homeland Security agents and New Mexico State Police arrested Schwartzrock Wednesday at his home and said they found over 12,000 pictures of what looked like child pornography downloaded onto electronics at his home.
If convicted of the alleged offenses, Schwartzrock faces a sentence of five to 40 years behind bars. He would also be required to register as a sex offender.