A Lorena man arrested last year on a felony child pornography charge is facing new charges that he possessed 13,000 illicit images of children, some of which he shared online, an arrest affidavit states.

Bryce Jacob Willis, 34, was arrested Friday on a second-degree felony charge of promotion of prostitution, nearly two months after he was arrested by McLennan County Sheriff's Office investigators on a second-degree felony charge of possession of child pornography with intent to distribute.

Investigators discovered thousands more child pornography images, which warranted the new charge, the affidavit states.

Local officials opened an investigation late last year after Australian law enforcement conducted a raid and informed the U.S. Department of Homeland Security of suspicious activity. Officials stated they uncovered that was connected to an IP address for a Woodway business, Sheriff Parnell McNamara previously said.

Deputies searched the business and arrested Willis at the business, although the business did not appear to be involved in the crime.

Willis was accused of downloading and sharing more than a dozen images of child pornography. Forensic searches of electronics owned by Willis uncovered 13,640 images and 52 videos containing child pornography, the affidavit states.

Deputies arrested Willis at the McLennan County Sheriff's Office last Friday and he was taken to McLennan County Jail. He later posted a bond listed at $75,000 and was released from custody over the weekend.

Kristin Hoppa has been covering public safety and breaking news for the Tribune-Herald since January 2016. She worked in Northwest Missouri covering crime-related issues before her move to Central Texas. She is a University of Kansas graduate.

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