By Pete Schroeder
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A senior attorney with the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation has pleaded guilty to one charge of sexually exploiting children, the Justice Department announced late Tuesday.
Mark Black, 50, was a member of two online groups dedicated to finding prepubescent girls and convincing them to livestream themselves engaging in sexually explicit content, the Justice Department said.
Black had most recently worked as special counsel in the office of the FDIC’s general counsel, according to his LinkedIn profile. He had been with the FDIC since 2013.
An FDIC spokesperson said Black was suspended by the agency after learning of the allegations, but none of the activity was related to the FDIC or involved agency resources.
Black and his attorneys could not be immediately reached for comment.
The Justice Department said Black induced a minor to engage in such conduct in 2019 and secretly recorded it. He and an unnamed co-conspirator also convinced another girl to engage in similar acts on a livestream, which was also secretly recorded and shared.
Black pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to produce child pornography and one count of coercion and enticement. He will be sentenced on April 30, and faces a minimum of 15 years in prison and a maximum of a life sentence.
The charges come amid intense scrutiny of the FDIC’s culture and personnel policies after media reports alleged widespread sexual harassment at the agency. The FDIC is investigating the allegations.
(Reporting by Pete Schroeder; editing by Michelle Price and Bernadette Baum)