DALLAS — A wealthy socialite who told federal authorities that she had distributed child pornography every day for 13 years pleaded guilty Tuesday to one count of transporting and shipping child porn.Erika Susan Perdue, 42, of University Park entered her plea before Magistrate Judge Paul D. Stickney in a federal courtroom.If the court accepts her plea, Perdue could be sentenced to 14 years in prison and a lifetime of supervision upon her release and fined a maximum of $250,000.Perdue will be sentenced Jan. 13 before U.S. District Judge Sam A. Lindsay. At that time, as part of her plea agreement, Perdue will pay $5,000 to a victim identified as “Vicky.” The girl was found and identified by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.Federal authorities took Perdue into custody in April 2012, and she was later released on bail. She was rearrested in June 2012 after violating conditions of her release. She has been in custody since then.An investigation began Jan. 4, 2012, when FBI agent Daniel O’Donnell, working undercover in Linthicum, Md., discovered a public file-sharing program online and came across an individual with the user name “Classybitch.”According to a federal criminal complaint, the individual allowed the undercover FBI agent to browse a folder and he saw dozens of files on child porn.The next day, another undercover agent found the same sharing program and was allowed to browse a folder containing images of child porn.Federal agents tracked down the individual and identified her as Perdue. Authorities identified her home, which was owned by her husband. Armed with search warrants, federal authorities raided the mansion in University Park on April 10, 2012.At her home, Perdue admitted to federal agents that she had received, distributed and possessed images and videos of child porn since 1999.Perdue claimed to distribute child porn daily, even shipping out images the day before the raid.
Domingo Ramirez Jr., 817-390-7763 Twitter: @mingoramirezjr