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Centre County Journalist Could Face Federal Charges

More legal problems, including more possible criminal charges, are facing a Centre County journalist accused of soliciting sex with teenagers.

At the Centre County Courthouse Wednesday morning, Christopher Morelli was guided out of the building following his court appearance.

We asked him for comment. He declined.

Within recent weeks, the 54-year-old Morelli has been arrested twice: Two separate cases on similar charges soliciting sex from teenage girls.

Wednesday, Morelli waived preliminary hearings in both cases sending them to possible trials.

Centre County District Attorney Bernie Cantorna says he expects federal authorities to take over the case with new federal charges possible.

In the first set of charges against Morelli, he’s accused of sending online sexually explicit messages to an FBI agent posing as a 14-year-old girl.

Then in the second case, a woman came forward saying when she was 14 years old, in 2011, she was on a youth soccer team that Morelli coached.

She told police Morelli served her and a friend alcohol while they visited his home, and then sent her increasingly sexually explicit messages while trying to meet her alone for months.

Morelli remains jailed with no bail.District Attorney Cantorna stresses police continue their investigation.

If convicted of a statutory sexual assault charge, Morelli could be facing 10 to 20 years in prison.

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