Editor's Note: The San Mateo County Sheriff's Office released four of the 10 booking photos of the suspects, which were uploaded Saturday, March 24.
However, after further consideration, Patch editors have decided to remove the photos and the suspects' addresses to protect the privacy of the suspects' families.
Authorities have arrested 10 men in connection with a countywide child pornography investigation, police announced Thursday afternoon.
The 10 suspects were arrested Thursday following a sweep of suspected child pornography users and distributors in San Mateo County, according to police.
A cluster of suspected child pornography users detected in San Mateo County led the Silicon Valley Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force to launch the sweep, which began early Thursday morning, police said.
Officers with warrants searched 11 homes in San Mateo County, and computers with pornographic images and other evidence allegedly linking the men to the distribution and or possession of child pornography were seized.
Nine felony arrests were made on men suspected of possessing and/or distributing child pornography, with additional investigations continuing from evidence seized.
Nine of the men were booked into San Mateo County jail on suspicion of felony charges related to child pornography, and another was arrested for an unrelated warrant.
More than 100 investigators from more than 20 law enforcement agencies collaborated with the Silicon Valley Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Task Force to launch the operation.
Local detectives included teams from the San Mateo County Sheriff's Office, Daly City, East Palo Alto, Menlo Park, Redwood City, San Mateo, and South San Francisco Police Departments, the San Jose Police Department, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the US Postal Inspection Service, and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI).
The following suspects were arrested:
1. Gordon Lee, age 44, of Daly City. Booked into San Mateo County Jail for Possession of Child Pornography.
2. Christopher Winans, age 24, of East Palo Alto. Booked into San Mateo County Jail for Possession of Child Pornography.
3. Charles Reyes, age 46, of San Jose. Booked into San Mateo County Jail for arrest warrants and Possession of Child Pornography.
4. Stephen Wolf, age 64, of Portola Valley. Booked into San Mateo County Jail for Possession of Child Pornography.
5. Paul Ambler, age 58, of San Mateo. Booked into San Mateo County Jail for Possession and Distribution of Child Pornography.
6. Paul Tazbaz, age 36, of San Mateo. Booked into San Mateo County Jail for Possession of Child Pornography.
7. Samnang Chun, age 23, of San Mateo. Booked into San Mateo County Jail for Possession and Distribution of Child Pornography.
8. Ritha Chun, age 29, of San Mateo also arrested, for an unrelated warrant on First Ave.
9. Steve Wilson, age 52, of South San Francisco. Booked into San Mateo County Jail for Possession of Child Pornography.
10. Cruz-Martin Caseiro-Rosas, age 32, of South San Francisco. Booked into San Mateo County Jail for Possession of Child Pornography.
The following information has been provided by the ICAC:
The 8-year-old Silicon Valley ICAC Task Force is one of 61 around the nation targeting peer-to-peer file sharing online, evolving from previous investigative techniques when suspects often were identified through chatroom decoy operations. Investigators search for hard-core images involving pre-pubescent children. They connect with suspects who are sharing the images and track their individual IP (Internet protocol) addresses. Investigators then use search warrants to figure out who owns the individual IP address and carry out search warrants for those people's homes. The San Jose Police Department is the lead agency for the SVICAC Task Force.
A key feature of the task force arsenal is a mobile forensics lab that allows investigators in a technology-stocked van to drive up to a suspect's home, seize hard drives and immediately begin searching for evidence that would normally take months to obtain from a state Department of Justice lab.
The SVICAC Task Force has arrested over 40 men for possession of child pornography since November. The task force has conducted a number of child porn enforcement operations in the Bay Area over the last few months, including multiple arrests in Marin County, Sonoma County, Monterey County, Alameda County, San Jose and Oakland.
COMMUNITY SAFETY MESSAGE FROM THE SAN MATEO POLICE DEPARTMENT:
Identification and arrest of individuals viewing and trafficking in child pornography is an important way that local law-enforcement agencies, in coordination with specialized groups like ICAC, prevent tragedies from occurring in our communities. Investigators have found significant links between the possession and trading of child pornography and the actual victimization of children, including a progression by some suspects from fantasy (internet child porn) to reality (sexual crimes against actual child-victims). Frequent operations such as these help keep our communities safe.
The residential location of many registered sex offenders can be located by simply searching the Megan’s Law website:
Public safety information about keeping children safe on the internet can be found at these websites: