Des Moines sex offender pleads guilty in child porn case

Des Moines sex offender pleads guilty in child porn case
Gregory O'Neall
SEATTLE -- A registered sex offender from Des Moines is facing a minimum of ten years in prison after pleading guilty on Tuesday to possessing more than 30,000 images of child pornography.

Gregory Sean O'Neall, 51, was arrested in June after investigators found more than 100 close-up photos of young girls at a Costco store where he worked as a contract employee.

The arrest came after an investigation by the Department of Homeland Security uncovered evidence that O'Neall, using the screen name "Animal instinct," downloaded and distributed images of girls as young as age 3 to 5 engaged in sex acts with adult males, court documents say.

During the course of the investigation, a Homeland Security agent discovered that "Animal instinct" also had posted nine photo albums to a Russia-based website with names like "More Costco Cuties," "Princess of the Launderette" and "Still More Costco Cuties," court files say.

The "Costco Cuties" albums were found to contain what appeared to be 112 secretly taken close-up photos of random young girls shopping with their families at Costco stores. In a chat section with the photos, "Animal instinct" said he took the photos himself, according to court documents.

The investigation later found that O'Neall was employed by Warehouse Demo Services as a food sample provider at a Costco store in Federal Way, and some of the photos posted by "Animal instinct" on the website showed the food sampler station.

Agents then found that O'Neall was required to register as a sex offender in Texas following a previous criminal conviction in 1991. Records also showed that O'Neall updated his sex offender status with his current Washington state address in March.

O'Neall will be sentenced in December. He faces a mandatory minimum of ten years in prison, but could be sentenced to up to 20 years.