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PLANO (CBSDFW.COM) – A federal grand jury has indicted a deputy with the Denton County Sheriff’s Office (DCSO) on child pornography charges.

Joe Edward Cummings is accused of possessing digital child pornography files, storing them in a cloud-based service and sharing the porn with others online.

The investigation into Cummings’ alleged activity, conducted by several different agencies, including the United States Secret Service and the Texas Rangers began in October. The DCSO assisted with the investigation and placed Cummings on leave October 27, 2014.

According to the two-count indictment, some of the photos found were of underage girls with adult men.

Officials say the case is part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative to combat what they call the “epidemic” of child sexual exploitation and abuse.

State and federal officials arrested Cummings on December 12, 2014. He had worked for the DCSO for more than 18 years.

If convicted, Cummings faces up to 40 years in prison and fines of up to $500,000.

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