A Novato man who works as a criminal investigator for the state Department of Justice was arrested Friday on charges of possession of child pornography, authorities said.

Special Agent Jeffrey David Schinkel, 34, was arraigned before a federal judge in San Francisco after his arrest and pleaded not guilty. He is in the custody of the U.S. Marshal Service.

According to federal prosecutors, Schinkel sent an undercover agent for Immigration and Customs Enforcement an invitation to join a members-only Web site offering child pornography. Schinkel is also accused of viewing the site himself, in violation of federal law that bars knowingly accessing a child porn site with the intention to view the material.

His alleged actions were not part of any investigations for the Department of Justice, authorities said.

Schinkel is charged with one count of possession of child pornography. If convicted, he could face up to 10 years in prison, a $250,000 fine and mandatory registration as a sex offender.

Schinkel was scheduled to return to court Tuesday for appointment of an attorney.

Authorities said the arrest capped an eight-month investigation by the FBI and ICE agents in San Francisco and Phoenix.

The state Department of Justice has suspended Schinkel's "peace officer powers," confiscated his equipment and credentials, and opened an internal investigation, the agency said.

Christine Gasparac, a department spokeswoman, declined to comment on how long Schinkel