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Cary Youth Minister Pleads Guilty To Sex Charges

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jeffrey smith
APEX, N.C. — A Cary youth minister accused of sending nude photos of young boys via e-mail pleaded guilty on Monday to charges of sexual exploitation of a minor.

Jeffrey Smith, who worked at Peace Presbyterian Church in Cary, was sentenced to 10 to 20 months in prison on five counts of second-degree sexual exploitation of a minor and one count of third-degree sexual exploitation of a minor.

Apex police arrested Smith in March 2005 after receiving a tip from Illinois investigators, who said Smith sent pornographic photos from his home to someone in Illinois.

Smith's sentence was suspended for five years. Under the terms of his probation, he must register as a sex offender, and he cannot have contact with children under the age of 18, except his own biological children.

He must also refrain from accessing the Internet and must continue mental health treatment. Smith must also pay a $500 fine and court costs and cannot have contact with the victim.